Best Internet Providers in Great Falls, Montana

Best Internet Providers in Great Falls, Montanagettyimages-1773789766.jpg

What is the best internet provider in Great Falls?

Multiple internet service providers cover Great Falls, but for many, Spectrum will be the best choice for home internet. Spectrum has the greatest broadband coverage in Great Falls, the lowest starting price at $40 a month and is tied for the fastest download speed at 1,000 megabits per second.

Spectrum is the only cable internet provider in Great Falls, but fiber service may be available from Quantum Fiber, KDS or 3 Rivers, depending on where you live. Quantum Fiber presents the best value and local coverage of the three, though fiber availability from any ISP is scarce in Great Falls. Fellow Lumen Technologies brand CenturyLink is available throughout much of the area, but you’ll likely want to pass on the slow, inconsistent speeds that come with DSL service.

If fiber is unavailable and you’re looking for an alternative to Spectrum’s cable internet, fixed wireless may be an option. A few wireless ISPs serve the area, including KDS and Amaze Wireless, but T-Mobile Home Internet and Verizon 5G Home Internet are the only ones capable of broadband speeds, at least 100 megabits per second down and 20Mbps up.

Internet providers in Great Falls, Montana, compared

Provider Internet technology Monthly price range Speed range Monthly equipment costs Data cap Contract CNET review score
3 Rivers Communications Fiber $80-$100 100-250Mbps None None None N/A
Amaze Wireless Fixed wireless $65-$89 8-25Mbps $8 None None N/A
CenturyLink
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DSL $55 30-140Mbps $15 (optional) None None 6.7
KDS Networks Fiber, fixed wireless $60-$160 fiber, $55-$90 fixed wireless 150-1,000Mbps fiber, 9-35Mbps fixed wireless Varies None None N/A
Quantum Fiber Fiber $50-$75 500-940Mbps None None None 6.7
Spectrum
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Cable $40-$60 300-1,000Mbps $7 (optional) None None 7.2
T-Mobile Home Internet
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Fixed wireless $50 ($40 with eligible mobile plans) 72-245Mbps None None None 7.4
Verizon 5G Home Internet
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Fixed wireless $50-$70 ($35-$45 with eligible mobile plans) 50-1,000Mbps None None None 7.2

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Source: CNET analysis of provider data.

What is the cheapest internet plan in Great Falls?

Plan Starting price Max download speed Monthly equipment fee
Spectrum Internet
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$40 300Mbps $7 (optional)
Quantum Fiber 500 $50 500Mbps None
T-Mobile Home Internet
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$50 ($40 with eligible mobile plans) 245Mbps None
Verizon 5G Home Internet
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$50 ($35 with eligible mobile plans) 300Mbps None

Source: CNET analysis of provider data.

View of the Great Falls in Montana at dusk. View of the Great Falls in Montana at dusk.

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How to find internet deals and promotions in Great Falls

The best internet deals and the top promotions in Great Falls depend on what discounts are available during that period. Most deals are short-lived, but we look frequently for the latest offers. 

How many members of your household use the internet?

Great Falls internet providers, such as T-Mobile Home Internet, may offer lower introductory pricing or other incentives for a limited time. Many, including Spectrum and Quantum Fiber, run the same standard pricing year-round. 

For a more extensive list of deals, check out our guide on the best internet deals.

Fastest internet plans in Great Falls

Plan Starting price Max download speed Max upload speed Data cap Connection type
KDS Networks $160 1,000Mbps 500Mbps None Fiber
Spectrum Internet Gig
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$60 1,000Mbps 40Mbps None Cable
Verizon 5G Home Plus Internet
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$70 ($45 with eligible mobile plans) 1,000Mbps 75Mbps None Fixed wireless
Quantum Fiber $75 940Mbps 940Mbps None Fiber

Source: CNET analysis of provider data.

What’s a good internet speed?

Most internet connection plans can now handle basic productivity and communication tasks. If you’re looking for an internet plan that can accommodate videoconferencing, streaming video or gaming, you’ll have a better experience with a more robust connection. Here’s an overview of the recommended minimum download speeds for various applications, according to the Federal Communications Commission. Note that these are only guidelines and that internet speed, service and performance vary by connection type, provider and address.

For more information, refer to our guide on how much internet speed you really need.

  • 0 to 5Mbps allows you to tackle the basics: browsing the internet, sending and receiving email and streaming low-quality video.
  • 5 to 40Mbps gives you higher-quality video streaming and videoconferencing.
  • 40 to 100Mbps should give one user sufficient bandwidth to satisfy the demands of modern telecommuting, video streaming and online gaming. 
  • 100 to 500Mbps allows one to two users to simultaneously engage in high-bandwidth activities like videoconferencing, streaming and online gaming. 
  • 500 to 1,000Mbps allows three or more users to engage in high-bandwidth activities at the same time.

How CNET chose the best internet providers in Great Falls, Montana

Internet service providers are numerous and regional. Unlike the latest smartphone, laptop, router or kitchen tool, it’s impractical to personally test every ISP in a given city. What’s our approach? We start by researching the pricing, availability and speed information, drawing on our own historical ISP data, the provider sites and mapping information from the Federal Communications Commission at FCC.gov.

It doesn’t end there: We go to the FCC’s website to check our data and ensure we consider every ISP that provides service in an area. We also input local addresses on provider websites to find specific options for residents. We look at sources, including the American Customer Satisfaction Index and J.D. Power, to evaluate how happy customers are with an ISP’s service. ISP plans and prices are subject to frequent changes; all information provided is accurate as of publication.

Once we have this localized information, we ask three main questions:

  1. Does the provider offer access to reasonably fast internet speeds?
  2. Do customers get decent value for what they’re paying?
  3. Are customers happy with their service?

The answer to those questions is often layered and complex, the providers who come closest to “yes” on all three are the ones we recommend. When selecting the cheapest internet service, we look for the plans with the lowest monthly fee, although we also factor in things like price increases, equipment fees and contracts. Choosing the fastest internet service is relatively straightforward. We look at advertised upload and download speeds and consider real-world speed data from sources like Ookla and FCC reports.

To explore our process in more depth, visit our how we test ISPs page.

Internet providers in Great Falls, Montana FAQs

What is the best internet service provider in Great Falls?

Spectrum is the best internet provider in Great Falls, thanks to its high-speed availability, low introductory rates and simple service terms, which include unlimited data and no contracts.

Is fiber internet available in Great Falls?

The most recent FCC data shows that fiber internet is available to around 11% of Great Falls households. Quantum Fiber is the largest fiber provider in Great Falls, although KDS and 3 Rivers also offer fiber connections in parts of the area.

What is the cheapest internet provider in Great Falls?

Spectrum is the cheapest internet provider in Great Falls, with service starting at $40 a month for speeds up to 300Mbps. The rate increases significantly after 12 months, up to $80. Quantum Fiber, while $10 more than Spectrum for the first year, offers a price-for-life guarantee, making it the cheapest long-term provider in Great Falls.

Which internet provider in Great Falls offers the fastest plan?

Spectrum and KDS offer the fastest download speeds in Great Falls, up to 1,000Mbps, starting at $60 and $160 monthly, respectively. As a fiber provider, KDS can deliver faster upload speeds, up to 500Mbps, whereas Spectrum’s upload speeds top out around 40Mbps.

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