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Windstream Review 2021

Richard Sutherland Author image

In a Nutshell

Windstream’s DSL and fiber service pricing varies hugely based on your location. But in many areas, Windstream offers the cheapest pricing for relatively fast internet service, especially if your other options are limited to satellite or DSL. Windstream also has no data caps, no throttling, no contracts, and 24/7 customer support. Overall, it’s a solid ISP, particularly in rural locations where internet connection options are few and far between.

pros

  • No data caps
  • No contracts
  • Fast speeds even in rural locations

cons

  • Prices highly inconsistent across regions
  • No security features included

Windstream Windstream Visit Site

Windstream at a Glance

Best for (families, students, businesses, etc.): Families, businesses

Starting Price: $27/month (location-dependent)

Connection Type (Cable, DSL, etc.): DSL, Fiber

Download Speeds: 15-1000Mbps

Coverage (# of states available): 18

Money-Back Guarantee?: 30 days

What Services and Features Does Windstream Offer?

In 2021, Windstream split into three divisions—Kinetic by Windstream (residential solutions), Kinetic Business by Windstream (small business solutions), and Windstream Enterprise (large business solutions).

All these divisions offer forms of internet connectivity, with business solutions offering faster speeds and SLAs (service level agreements).

Kinetic by Windstream also includes the option of streaming TV and voice services for the home.

Prices, Plans, and Value for Money

Windstream is coy about the plans and pricing available in each of its covered areas. Having confirmed that residential internet from Windstream is available in your area, you’ll need to call a phone number to get more details on pricing and speed availability.

This secrecy is perhaps because the pricing is very inconsistent across regions. For example, you can get a 400Mbps fiber connection in one state for a better price than you’ll pay for a 50Mbps DSL connection in another. DSL pricing is particularly volatile, with some locations only getting a 15Mbps connection for $45/month.

Windstream’s value for money, therefore, depends highly on location.

Plan
Kinetic 50
Kinetic 200
Kinetic 400
Download speed
50Mbps
200Mbps
400Mbps
Upload speed
20Mbps
2000Mbps
400Mbps
Type
DSL
Fiber
Fiber
Intro price/month
$27
$37
$55
Reg. price/month
$55
$55
$55

Ease of Use, Hardware and Setup

Installation of Kinetic by Windstream usually means self-installation. A modem is shipped to you within 3-4 days of ordering the service, accompanied by installation instructions. The instructions are relatively simple to follow, but Windstream technical assistance is available 24/7 over the phone to assist you in setting up your service if you need it.

Windstream also offers professional installation for around $35.

Windstream Security

Windstream comes with no security features as standard, but you can choose from three security packages that cost between $9.99 and $13.99 per month. 

The most affordable security plan adds parental controls, antivirus and malware protection, and premium technical support. Pay more, and you can add identity theft protection and credit monitoring services.

Windstream Performance

Windstream performance in your area depends on what type of service is available. If DSL is the only choice, Windstream is generally better priced than the competitors. 

In general, Windstream does well in speed tests. User speed test results routinely have Windstream as one of the top five fastest ISPs in the states it’s available in, and it often makes the top three. As always, your mileage may vary.

If you’re faced with choosing between Windstream and satellite internet, which is often the case, Windstream is usually faster than satellite and has no data cap, a significant advantage. However, some satellite providers, like Viasat, can offer faster speeds if they’ve available.

If fiber is ubiquitous, Windstream usually still comes in a little cheaper than most providers. If your choice is between Windstream fiber and cable, Windstream is typically slightly more expensive, but arguably worth it for the faster upload speeds and lack of data caps.

Windstream Customer Service

Support is available through live chat, email, and phone. Live chat hours run from Monday to Sunday, 7am-12am ET. Email support has a turnaround time of 24 hours.

Phone support is available 24/7. Windstream also has around 50 stores spread across the states where it supplies internet. So, you have many ways to get support for your Windstream internet service.

Windstream Windstream Visit Site

FAQ

What type of internet connection is Windstream?

Windstream’s internet service is delivered via DSL and fiber, depending on location. Windstream is aggressively increasing its fiber provisioning in rural areas, which is to be commended.

Did Windstream go out of business?

In February 2020, Windstream filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy after losing a legal battle with hedge fund Aurelius Capital Management. It continued to operate under Chapter 11 until September 2021, where a reorganization plan allowed Windstream to emerge from bankruptcy. 

Who owns Windstream now?

Windstream is now a private company with multiple owners. The largest ownership stake of 40% belongs to Elliott Marketing Corp., a New York private equity company.

Bottom Line

Windstream offers TV and phone services, but the DSL and fiber internet products it offers are the most interesting. Internet from Windstream usually comes in a little cheaper than the competition for the same speeds, and it has no data caps or long contracts to worry about. Technical support services are satisfactory, and security software is available at an extra monthly fee.

It’s difficult to wholeheartedly recommend to everyone because, in some areas, Windstream’s pricing is very high. But if it’s available in your area, it’s worth checking out the speeds and pricing that Windstream could offer you.

Richard brings 20+ years of web development, SEO, and marketing to the table. After graduating in Computer Science, Richard spent time lecturing in Java programming and building software for companies like Samsung and ASDA. Today, he writes for TechRadar, Top10.com, Creative Bloq, and other tech-heavy-hitters."

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