Since taking over the Northwest operations from Frontier Communications in 2020, Ziply Fiber has been making a name for itself. It’s a new ISP, stands out for its low intro rates, transparent pricing, and fair terms. It’s now the fastest in the area, offering a 10-gig plan across its four-state fiber network. Customer complaints and BBB rating stem from service transfer growing pains. We wouldn’t judge Ziply Fiber too harshly based on these minor hiccups and customer complaints.
What is Ziply Fiber?
Ziply Fiber’s low introductory pricing may be appealing if you’re looking for affordable internet service. However, remember that their cheaper plans offer speeds of only 50 or 200Mbps, which may be slower than other fiber providers’ low- and mid-tier plans. To get faster speeds, you’ll need to opt for the Fiber Gig plan, which is still reasonably priced. Ziply Internet’s DSL service may be a good option in rural areas, but the speed and reliability will vary depending on your location. Regardless of your chosen service, you’ll enjoy unlimited data and affordable Wi-Fi without being locked into a contract. Therefore, Ziply Fiber is a good choice for homes in the Pacific Northwest.
Ziply Fiber provides five symmetrical downloads and uploads speed tiers, a key advantage of fiber over cable. Ziply Fiber Internet (DSL) has one plan, which offers the fastest possible speeds, up to 115Mbps down and 7Mbps up, depending on your location. Having only one plan option may limit it, but it is common among DSL providers. After 12 months of service, the pricing on most Ziply Fiber plans increases slightly. However, Ziply Fiber plans remain competitively priced even after the price increase. Ziply Internet customers’ cost increases by $10 per month after 12 months of service, which aligns it with other DSL providers like AT&T and CenturyLink.
A Much-Needed Boost is Given to Low-Speed Levels
Ziply Fiber voluntarily updated its first two speed levels in August 2021, raising them from 30 and 100 Mbps to 50 and 200 Mbps, respectively, while maintaining the same pricing. It is a much-needed boost for customers who are using low-speed tiers. If you’re a light internet user or tired of the low upload speeds that often come with cable, DSL, satellite, and other types of internet, Ziply’s entry-level fiber plan might be suitable for you. With speeds of 50Mbps over a fiber connection, you can use it for light streaming and browsing on two or three devices. However, it may not be suitable for much more.
The speed tier of 200/200 is slower than what I would expect from a fiber provider. However, the upgrade from 100Mbps to 200Mbps makes this plan more practical. With speeds of 200Mbps, you can stream HD videos, play online games, and work from home on multiple devices simultaneously, making this plan suitable for most households. It’s worth noting that other fiber providers offer significantly faster speeds with their mid-tier plans. For example, AT&T, Frontier Communications, and Verizon Fios offer speeds in the 400-to-500Mbps range, although their pricing may be slightly higher.
We suggest skipping the first two plans and opting for the gigabit plan to get the most value for your money. Ziply, Fiber’s gigabit plan is significantly more valuable than the 50/50 and 200/200 plans, and it is priced lower than most Fiber or cable providers at $60 per month ($80 after 12 months). Examining the price per MBPS of download speed is one technique to estimate that value. You would pay 40 and 20 cents per Mbps for Ziply’s 50 and 200 Mbps fiber plans during the first year and 80 and 30 cents per Mbps afterward. You will pay 6 cents per Mbps in the first year of the gigabit plan and 8 cents per Mbps afterward.
Ziply Fiber aims to provide fiber internet to 80% of its service area. Although some of its lower speed tiers are not as fast as those of other fiber ISPs, the company’s commitment to expanding its fiber infrastructure could serve as a model for other providers. When acquiring Frontier Communications’ networks, approximately 30% of the lines were fiber-topic. However, it has since aggressively expanded its fiber footprint to cover over 50% of the service areas. For instance, in April, Ziply Fiber disclosed 17 fiber projects to upgrade over 39000 locations in 10 cities in Washington and seven in Oregon. The company also announced that it had brought fiber service to its 100th community, Washington, Yakima.
Suppose Ziply Fiber achieves its goal of 80% fiber coverage. In that case, it will provide fiber connections to more than 1.5 million people in the Northwest who did not previously have access to them under Frontier, including many individuals residing in rural areas. Ziply Fiber’s expansions have thus far covered small towns such as Tekoa, Washington, and Troy, Montana, with populations under 1,000 and more prominent cities throughout the Northwest.
Expanding fiber infrastructure not only benefits those who can access it but also provides relief to DSL networks. It could be considered a welcome development for Ziply Internet (DSL) customers who cannot access fiber-optic service. According to a spokesperson for Ziply Fiber, each customer who switches from the copper network to Fiber enhances capacity, dependability, and perceived speed for those who remain. Therefore, we aim to swiftly transition as many individuals as possible to Fiber to enhance service. In essence, fiber expansion is advantageous to all Ziply customers, though the extent of the benefit may differ. Nonetheless, it appears to be committed to improving service for all individuals within its service area, which is commendable.
Ziply Fiber’s Service Terms, Fees, and Wi-Fi
The company’s fees and service terms are primarily customer-centric, and its Wi-Fi equipment charges are less expensive than most competitors. Moreover, the equipment comes with whole-home connectivity. Customers can enjoy unlimited data usage without the risk of unexpected hidden costs since no contract requirements exist.
The Equipment Rental Fee Covers Wi-Fi Service for the Entire Home
It is a rare feature offered by a few providers. Despite already being competitive at $10 per month, Ziply’s equipment lease fee is equal to or lower than most providers. Free whole home Wi-Fi upgrade with equipment rental fee includes customized installation, one router, and up to three Wi-Fi extenders. The $10 fee may be temporary, with a $20 standard rate. Nevertheless, even at $20 per month, Ziply Fiber’s whole-home Wi-Fi service is a fantastic deal. Most providers charge an additional $5 or more fee per Wi-Fi extender, and some do not offer this service.
Ziply Fiber is unlikely to be available in the same service areas as other DSL and Fiber-optic providers when comparing internet service options. Instead, consumers can choose between Ziply Fiber and cable internet providers such as Spectrum or Xfinity. Generally, cable internet is superior to DSL, while fiber-optic internet is superior to cable. Therefore, if it is available in your area, it would be preferable over cable. However, if Ziply Internet is the only available option, cable Internet would be the next best alternative depending on the available DSL speeds. Ziply Fiber and major cable providers offer gig download speeds. Still, only fiber delivers symmetrical upload and download speeds, ensuring a more dependable and high-quality remote work and learning connection.
Compared to cable providers, Ziply Fiber’s plans are generally priced lower. While Xfinity does offer a 50Mbps plan for around $25 per month, the equipment fee is higher than Ziply Fiber. The lowest price may require customers to sign a one-year contract. On the other hand, Spectrum has a lower equipment fee than Ziply Fiber and offers unlimited data and contract-free service. However, starting prices are much higher at $49 per month. Overall, Ziply Fiber will likely provide more affordable plan options, faster upload speeds, and better reliability than cable internet.
Ziply Fiber offers affordable pricing with slower fiber speeds unless you opt for the gig service. The lower-priced plans will be a good option if your household requires 50 or 200 MBPS. However, for others, the gig service would be the best choice. Regarding Ziply Internet, the value of your plan will depend on the available speeds at your location. Expanding Ziply’s fiber network may enhance your DSL. However, the ultimate goal is fiber availability at your address, rendering DSL unnecessary. Let’s hope that Ziply continues to make progress.