In the 21st century, a fast and reliable internet connection is one of the most important amenities every home needs. In today’s turbulent times, where more people are working out of their home office, it’s more important than ever to have a network you can rely on.
Most Americans continue to rely on the internet from cable and telephone companies. While most brands offer adequate service, they usually require lengthy contracts, and rates can skyrocket once your promotional price expires.
All people ask for is a reliable connection at a reasonable price. So where can you turn to ensure you’re connected without spending an arm and a leg on your internet service every month? Today, I’m going to examine a company you may not expect: EarthLink.
The EarthLink Story
Anyone else lucky enough to have access to the internet in the 90s is no doubt familiar with EarthLink, as they were one of the biggest players in the original dot com boom.
EarthLink was founded in Pasadena, California in 1994, and it quickly rose to prominence as one of the premier internet service providers. After a merger with the Atlanta-based company Mindspring in 2000, EarthLink became the second-largest ISP in America, with over five million subscribers. Only AOL had a larger piece of the market at this time.
As time went on, more and more ISPs that were thriving in the 90s began to fold, while EarthLink quietly made acquisitions to grow the company.
EarthLink is one of the few companies from that era to have survived, and they’re still one of the most viable options for internet users looking to leave lengthy contracts and huge price hikes from their cable providers in the rearview.
The company celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2019, and today EarthLink is available in more than 78 million households, which is more than any other service provider. Speeds of up to 1 gigabyte are available, and they were recently recognized as one of the fastest and most affordable ISPs in the country by Broadband Now.
EarthLink Plans and Pricing
Plans and pricing are based on the internet speed you want. Many areas have multiple plan choices, and if the company isn’t able to provide internet in your area, they can often offer partnerships with providers like AT&T.
It’s challenging to figure out precisely what EarthLink plans are because of location changes. However, for most of you, EarthLink may be able to offer a competitive advantage based on your location. And because it has fiber options, it could be worth checking out.
General pricing ranges from $49.95 for 50 Mbps DSL to $99.95 for 1000 Mbps Fiber Optic Internet. These require a one year contract, after which your prices are subject to change, and are entirely dependent on your location. These prices exclude taxes, equipment fees, and other fees.
EarthLink HyperLink (monthly cost)
|Internet Type||Download Speed||per month|
|DSL||Best Value||50 Mbps download||$49.95|
|DSL||Faster Streaming||100 Mbps download||$79.95|
|Fiber||Fastest Everything||1 Gbps download||$99.95|
With all EarthLink plans, customers receive:
- Internet capability with no caps and no throttling
- Premium email access with space for up to eight email addresses
- EarthLink portal, a customizable home page to make internet browsing more convenient
- Support services, including online self-help, phone support, and live chat
- My Account services for handling password changes and other administrative tasks
Beyond what’s included with your EarthLink package, a few package add-ons are incredibly useful for families and anyone who values their internet privacy.
Connected devices like tablets and laptops have made it much easier for parents to keep their children occupied and out of trouble. But, the internet can be a dangerous place, and parents must remain vigilant to make sure their kids aren’t browsing things they shouldn’t online or communicating with anyone they shouldn’t be.
Monitoring your kids’ internet activity is a job in and of itself, so EarthLink Guardian is such a helpful addition to their internet plans. With EarthLink Guardian, you can rest assured that your children are safe online.
EarthLink partnered with Bark, a leading parental monitoring app, to deliver their EarthLink Guardian service, which provides parents with three levels of protection for their children.
Guardian manages children’s screen time, the content they’re viewing, and filters malicious or inappropriate websites so you don’t have to worry about the kids stumbling onto something they shouldn’t see.
This AI-powered software connects to any of the internet devices in your home and immediately monitors your children’s activity. If Guardian notices anything suspicious, it immediately alerts parents by text and email.
Guardian is free for the first month, and then if you choose to keep Guardian monitoring, it’s an additional $9.95 per month.
Cyber attacks are a greater threat than they’ve ever been before. With enterprising hackers finding new ways to steal your information on a seemingly daily basis, it’s more important than ever to protect yourself and your information when you’re online.
EarthLink Protect is powered by Norton LifeLock, one of the leaders in internet security. This service makes it easy to stay safe online, and the included VPN provides the peace of mind that comes with knowing that no prying eyes can see what you’re doing online.
EarthLink Protect looks over all of your internet-connected devices, including malware protection, a smart firewall, password manager, VPN, SafeCam, and Dark Web Monitoring. Also included is up to 100gb of cloud storage.
The first month of EarthLink Protect is free, and after the trial period, users pay $7.95 per month for up to five devices. For an extra dollar a month, you can protect ten devices, and EarthLink will double your cloud storage from 50gb to 100gb.
Top 4 Reasons to Consider EarthLink
What are some of the best reasons to consider EarthLink? Read on as we cover why more people are cutting ties with their cable, phone, and internet providers in favor of a standalone service like EarthLink.
1. Internet is all They Do
Other ISPs like Verizon Fios / Comcast Xfinity are involved in multiple businesses, including internet, TV, and phone service. For users who are only interested in internet service, this often meant paying for additional products you don’t need, driving your bill up in the process.
2. No Confusing Promotional Pricing
One of the oldest tricks in the book for ISPs is to lock you in at an attractive promotional price that disappears 12 or 24 months down the line. Once that discounted price expires, you’ll find yourself paying significantly more for your internet service than you initially signed up for.
With EarthLink, there’s no promotional pricing. What you pay for your package on the day you sign up won’t change after you’ve been a customer for a year or two.
3. Several Affordable Plans To Choose From
EarthLink offers several different plans to meet the needs of every internet user. Whether you live in a small household that needs the internet for occasional use or run a business from your home and need the absolute fastest speeds possible, EarthLink has a plan for you.
Most competitors are priced similarly to EarthLink, but that pricing is usually contingent on either the user opting for a package that includes additional services. Standalone internet service from one of these companies is usually a bit more expensive than EarthLink, and they may be subject to promotional pricing restrictions.
4. Get Free Extras
Beyond your internet service, EarthLink throws in some helpful extras at no additional charge.
Your EarthLink service also includes tons of free email addresses. Customers receive eight full-service email addresses and ten anonymous addresses, which are sure to come in handy when you need to put down an email address with a business but aren’t interested in receiving marketing emails and spam from them.
Also included is free virus and spam protection to keep your computer running properly and your inbox free of obnoxious unsolicited messages.
What’s The Final Verdict?
For over 25 years, EarthLink has been a leading internet service provider that’s available in more homes than any other ISP in the country. For most of the 21st century, EarthLink has been growing their international and commercial presence, and many internet users forget about their fast, affordable, and reliable home internet service.
If you’re simply looking for a reliable internet provider that won’t jack your prices after a promotional period, EarthLink could be the best option for you and your family. Families who need to protect their kids when using the internet are also sure to love the additional protection and monitoring services that EarthLink offers.