Home Router What Modems Are Compatible With Windstream?

What Modems Are Compatible With Windstream?

by stacy

Is your internet bill from Windstream too high? Is there a way to reduce your Windstream internet bill? We have a possible alternative for you: instead of renting a Windstream compliant modem from Windstream, you might purchase one. This will help you save money and improve the performance of your wireless connection.

This article will explain the pros and cons of using a third party modem. We’ll discuss potential savings and performance enhancements, offer some tips, and then present our selection of Windstream compatible modems.

Windstream Internet Plans and Services

Windstream is a DSL internet service provider. It also offers cable internet, fixed wireless internet, and fiber internet Only in certain areas. All 50 US states offer Windstream internet services. Windstream is the most preferred ISP in rural areas. Windstream was rebranded in 2019, and now is known as Kinetic (Kinetic Internet and Kinetic Business Solutions).


Windstream DSL internet service is available in all 50 US states, with the exception of rural areas. Texas, Kentucky and Georgia have the best coverage. Windstream DSL is available in approximately. 13.5 million customers. Windstream is now the 6th largest company. The largest DSL internet provider.

Windstream DSL internet coverage map

Windstream DSL internet coverage map (source – broadbandnow.com)

Windstream offers an expanding fibre network in addition to DSL internet service, which is without a doubt the most important element of the company’s internet network. It serves over 4 million consumers in 18 states with fibre internet connectivity. This places it as the 6th largest fibre provider in the United States.

Kinetic Windstream fiber internet coverage map

Kinetic Windstream fiber internet coverage map (source – broadbandnow.com)

Windstream also offers fixed internet access to remote areas. It is available to approximately. Windstream is able to offer fixed wireless internet to customers in remote areas (available to approximately 70,000 customers) and has a relatively small cable network (available for less than 200,000 customers). 

Windstream cable internet coverage map

Windstream cable internet coverage map (source – broadbandnow.com)

Internet plans

Depending on which Windstream internet service is available in your area you may be able to get speeds of up to 100 Mb/s over DSL or as high as 1 Gbps over fiber. 

DSL speeds are between 15 and 100 Mbps. Prices start at $37/month (promotional 12-month agreement).  

DSL plans
Download speedUpload speedPromo priceRegular price
15 Mbps1 Mbps$37/month$55/month
25 Mbps1 Mbps$37/month$55/month
50 Mbps1 Mbps$45/month$67/month
100 Mbps1 Mbps$55/month$77/month

In select areas, you can choose one of Windstream’s fiber plans. Upload and download speeds for Fiber Plans are symmetrical. They can be downloaded and uploaded at speeds of 200 to 1,000 Mbps. Promo prices range from $37/month up to $67/month. The prices are very competitive compared to other providers of fiber internet. 

Fiber plans
Download speedUpload speedPromo priceRegular price
200 Mbps200 Mbps$37/month$55/month
400 Mbps400 Mbps$47/month$65/month
500 Mbps500 Mbps$57/month$75/month
1000 Mbps1,000 Mbps$67/month$85/month

Contract details

Like most internet providers, Windstream doesn’t require signing an annual contract. You can choose to sign a month-to-30 contract and can cancel your service at anytime. You will receive a better deal if that contract is signed. However, early termination fees will apply if your contract is cancelled. 

Data caps

These data caps have been widely criticized and hated by many ISPs over the past several years. Some providers impose reasonable limits (Comcast Xfinity, Cox). Others have very small limits on low-speed plans (Sparklight, SuddenlinkAT&T, Mediacom). 

Data limitations are still in place with some providers, such as Frontier, Verizon FiOS, CenturyLink, Spectrum, and RCN. Windstream is one of them, with no caps on any of their internet subscriptions. So you don’t have to worry about overage charges if you have DSL, fibre, or cable internet.

all Windstream internet plans come without caps

Modem Rental Policy

Almost all US internet providers charge $10-$15 per month for the use of a modem or modem/router combo. The monthly modem price from Windstream is $10. The monthly cost of a modem/router combination is $12. A $35 setup fee will be charged if you are unable to install the modem.

You can’t buy the modem or Kinetic gateway directly from Windstream, according to the information we collected from their website, but you may buy a Windstream-compatible modem from another supplier.

Services Not Included

You can also subscribe to Windstream’s internet security service for an extra $10-$15 each month (aka Kinetic Secure). There are three packages available: Connect Secure, Self-Secure, and Total Secure.

The first plan offers enhanced security and antivirus protection. It also includes premium tech support. The second plan offers identity theft protection as well as premium tech support. The most extensive plan is the most costly and combines all the benefits of the other two.

three available packages

Customer satisfaction

Windstream isn’t known for its customer service. It’s quite amazing! Internet providers generally have poor customer support. According to ACSI, Windstream’s customer support is below average. 

Windstream’s customer support

Low upload speeds (DSL subscribers), delayed or useless customer service, and poor wi-fi signal quality are the most common consumer complaints. The majority of consumers are happy with download speeds, internet connection stability, and customer service.

Can I Use My Own Modem With Windstream?

Yes, you can. According to Windstream. You can buy a third party modem by yourself. Windstream can even help you choose a router by telling you all you need to know about your connection type (ADSL, VDSL). If you are not utilizing a Windstream-provided modem, however, you will not receive any installation assistance.

Why should I use a modem that is compatible with Windstream?

Money savings and performance enhancement are typically used to justify using your own modem.

Calculating the savings you could earn is simple. Your yearly charge will be $144 if you pay $12 per month for your wireless modem. Over the course of three years, you will spend $432 in rental costs. Because internet providers don’t change their equipment very often, we’re talking about a three-year span. You could have to use the same modem for more than three years if you don’t upgrade your internet package (or until it breaks). This is a substantial sum. For this price, you can get a decent modem. You might also purchase the identical gateway that Windstream provides. Over the long run, this will save you more than $200.

This second argument is also very easy to explain. You can even get measurable data. We can even provide you with measurable data. ACSI Telecommunication Study, Windstream’s in-home wi-fi service is quite bad and their gateways offer poor wi-fi coverage. Windstream’s wi-fi service is worse than that of Frontier and Suddenlink.

Windstream’s in-home wi-fi service

Another discovery we’d like to share is a comparison of ACSI indexes for two sets of customers: those who use ISP-supplied equipment and those who use their own.

ISP-provided equipment

These results indicate that third-party equipment delivers noticeably better performance. Keep in mind that this graph does not show Windstream-provided equipment’s satisfaction. Because Windstream’s in-home wi-fi performance is below average, the ACSI index differential would have been significantly greater.

Windstream compatible modems provide significantly improved performance. Depending on the quality of the equipment, you can save money while maintaining the same level of performance. You can also save money while maintaining the same level of performance. Everything is dependent on your budget and requirements.

What advantages does renting a modem from Windstream provide?

Renting a modem is significantly more straightforward and convenient. You won’t have to waste time learning about modems or determining what type of connection you have. If you don’t know how to install a modem, you don’t have to. Also, if there is an issue with your connection or modem, you will receive all essential support (or should receive it). Finally, if your modem breaks, you’ll receive a free replacement.

What are the Key Features to Consider When Buying a Windstream Compatible Modem

You must first consider the type and location of your connection. Windstream provides a variety of services in different areas and states. It’s usually a DSL connection, although it might also be fiber, fixed wireless, or even cable in some circumstances.

Also, if you have DSL internet, you must know what type of DSL you have. There are ADSL, ADSL 2, ADSL 2+ and SDSL. You also have VDSL, VDSL 2 and xDSL. DSL modems with higher speeds than 100 Mbps (VDSL 2, and xDSL), will work with older DSL connections. VDSL and VDSL 2 will not be supported by ADSL modems. Windstream DSL customers have either bonded VDSL2+ or VDSL2. Windstream customer service can help you determine your connection type if you’re not sure.

DSL connection

Once you’ve established your connection type, it’s time to start thinking about the other things. It is a common problem to choose between buying a Windstream compatible modem (or modem/router combo) and buying one separately. 

Gateway is more convenient. It’s less messy (because you have to deal with fewer cables) and takes less space. But, gateways are often less reliable than separate units when it comes to wi fi connection quality. Separate routers with external antennas will provide better coverage and offer more adjustment options. If you’re a gamer, using separate units is a must. 

Do I rent or buy my own Windstream Compatible Modems?

Each option has pros and cons. The decision you make depends on your personal preferences, financial situation, time availability, and other factors. We recommend that you try using your own modem because it will save you money and improve your wi-fi connection. Also, installing a modem is not rocket science; learning everything you need to know about installing a modem and tweaking all the fundamental settings takes less than an hour. Finally, you won’t have to worry about troubleshooting the modem on your own if something goes wrong; modems seldom break, and even if they do, you’ll be able to easily discover how to restart, reset, or alter the settings.

If you are convinced by our arguments to look for a modem you can continue reading this article. We have compiled a list of the top Windstream compatible modems for DSL subscribers, as well as the best Windstream compatible routers for fiber subscribers. These suggestions should help you to find the best router or modem for your needs. 

Best Compatible Modems for Windstream

1. Best Windstream Compatible Modem Under $200 – Actiontec C2300A

Actiontec C2300A

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Compatible with Windstream DSL plans of up to 100 Mbps

CenturyLink rents the Actiontec C2300A model to its clients, although it’s fully compatible with Windstream DSL internet (bonded VDSL up to 100 Mbps). If you have Windstream fibre, you can utilize this gateway as well.

C2300A has a very similar physical appearance to the Kinetic gateway offered by Windstream (ActiontecT3200) in terms of characteristics. This modem is compatible with bonded VDSL. It can handle Windstream’s highest DSL speeds. The maximum theoretical DSL speed of the unit is 200 Mbps. It is compatible with Windstream’s highest gig speeds (Windstream Kinetic1 Gig). 

You will find a DSL port, two phone ports and one SFP port (for Pon) on the back. There are also 4 LAN ports and 2 USB 3.0 ports. The front panel has a WPS and two LED indicators for internet and wi-fi. 

C2300A can be described as a gateway. It has a built in router. It is equipped with a dual band WiFi5 router. 600 Mbps is the maximum speed allowed over 2.4 GHz. Maximum wireless speed supported over 5 GHz: 1.7 Gbps It supports MU-MIMOBeamforming and firewall support. QoS support is available on the router. It also has advanced security features such as WPA2 support, firewalls, WPA2 support for website blocking, DoS attack protection and IP filtering.). 

2. Best Windstream Compatible Modem Under $300 – Actiontec T3200

Actiontec T3200

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Compatible with Windstream DSL plans of up to 100 Mbps

Actiontec T3200 is the exact same model that Windstream provides its DSL subscribers with. T3200 has very similar features and appearance to the C2300A. 

T3200 is an xDSL modem that can be used with bonded VDSL2.It’s compatible with all of Windstream’s DSL speeds. This machine is also compatible with Windstream’s fibre internet service.

This modem has fewer ports than our previous C2300A. It has a single DSL connection, a WAN connection, four LAN ports, and a USB connector. The front side is identical to that of the C2300A.

The T3200 also includes a built-in router (a gateway). Dual-band WiFi5 is supported by the router (compatible 802.11ac protocol). The maximum supported rates are 600 Mbps over 2.4 GHz and 1.7 Mbps over 5 GHz, which are the same as on the C2300A. This router supports all of the latest technologies for improved performance, including beamforming and multi-user MIMO. It contains all of the basic security features and supports QoS.

3. ZyXEL C3000Z

ZyXEL C3000Z

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Compatible with Windstream DSL plans of up to 100 Mbps

Zyxel 3000Z is another CenturyLink modem/router combination, just like the one at the top of this list. C3000Z, like the first, is compatible with Windstream DSL. 

C3000Z supports bonded VDSL2 and is a VDSL2 modem. It can be used with all DSL speeds offered at Windstream. This unit can also be used with Windstream fiber. 

The back of the unit has a DSL port and a WAN port. There are four LAN ports and one USB port. This allows you to connect an external hard drive or printer. One button (WPS rapid connect) and a slew of LEDs (internet, DSL 1, DSL 2, WAN/LAN, and two wi-fi indicators – 2.4 and 5 GHz) adorn the front panel.

The C3000Z router shares all of its predecessors’ qualities. It’s a WiFi5 router with dual bands. It has a combined transmission speed of 2.3 Gbps (600 Mbps over 2.4 GHz and 1.7 Gbps above 5 GHz).

The router supports beamforming and MU-MIMO. It offers DoS attack protection and firewalls. 

Windstream Compatible Routers

If you have a Windstream fibre connection, you only need to connect a router to your ONT — no modem is required. Any router can do the job and be compatible with your service. But you must choose the one that supports your speed and offers good coverage throughout your entire home. Consider the supported wireless protocol (AC and AX) as well as additional features if you’re a gamer.

4. Best Windstream Compatible Router Under $100 – TP-Link Archer AX21

TP-Link Archer AX21

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Windstream Fiber plans with Windstream Kinetic 500 or higher are recommended

ACSI states that TP Link routers provide the best performance among third-party routers. This is even more true when you take into account the cost. TP-Link routers are less expensive than NETGEAR and ASUS routers, which is undoubtedly the main reason for their popularity. This is in addition to the fact that they outperform routers from other manufacturers.

TP-Link routers deliver the best possible performance

Our budget-friendly router recommendation is TP Link. AX21 Archer If $100 is too costly for you and you don’t want speeds more than 200 Mbps, you can locate one for much less. All routers are under $50, including the TP-Link Archer A5 or A6, the NETGEAR R6230, R6230, and R6330.

The device is fairly basic and has four antennae. On the front, there are five LED indicators. One WAN port, four Gigabit LAN connections, and one USB port for file sharing are located on the back.

AX21 works with the 802.11ax wireless protocol. WiFi6 router). AX21 is a WiFi6 router and supports all of the latest technologies to improve wi-fi coverage and performance, including beamforming, OFDMA and MU-MIMO. This modem also supports 802.11ax, which will provide a lower lag than WiFi5, better range and greater capacity. This router should be capable of covering 1,500-2, 000 ft thanks to its four antennas.2. You can combine the two to get more range. TP-Link’s OneMesh extenders

AX21, a dual-band router that can transmit on both frequencies simultaneously, is available from AX21. It can handle 40+ devices, again thanks to 802.11ax support. That goes much beyond WiFi5 routers. The router’s categorization is AX1800. This means the maximum speed (on both bands) is 1,800 Mbps – 574 Mbps on 2.4 GHz and 1,200 Mbps on 5 GHz. Although it can potentially manage Kinetic 1 GB (over 5GHz), at those speeds, we recommend something more expensive.

Alexa is compatible with it. It also supports WPA3, the most recent security standard. You may also monitor and control your wireless network and create a guest network.

5. Best Windstream Compatible Router for Gaming – ASUS RT-AX88U


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Compatible with Windstream Fiber Plans up to Windstream KineticGig

Similar to the TP-Link AX21 router, RT-AX88U dual-band WiFi6 (AX), router is faster, more powerful, and offers more features than AX21.

The RT-AX88U can be used for all online activities, including gaming. You will experience a lower ping and lag than WiFi5 routers and most WiFi6 routers. You can prioritize game packets with QoS prioritization.

This unit has 8 Gigabit LAN port, which is more than cheaper units. It provides much better connectivity. It also features one WAN port as well as two USB 3.1 ports. 

Four external antennas are used in conjunction with all technologies related to WiFI6 (OFDMA and MU-MIMO), to provide excellent coverage and wi-fi performance. The RTX88U can handle 40+ devices, and will cover large houses (3000+ ft).2). Combining it with ASUS AiMesh extenders for even more coverage is advised.

This router’s maximum stated speed (on both bands) is 6,000 Mbps – 1,200 Mbps on 2.4 GHz and 4,800 Mbps on 5 GHz.

The RT-AX88U supports WPA2 and WPA3. VPN support, firewalls, DoS attack protection, powerful parental controls, network and port filters, DMZ, port triggering, and port forwarding are just a few of the settings and features you’d expect from a router in this price range. You also get the AiProtection ProAdvanced security software, which offers additional online security features such.

6. Best Overall – NETGEAR Nighthawk RAX70

NETGEAR Nighthawk RAX70

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Compatible with Windstream Fiber Plans up to Windstream KineticGig

The NETGEAR RAX70 router is among the most powerful and capable on the market. It’s a tri-band WIFi6 router. It supports one WAN port and four Gigabit LAN connections. Those LAN ports support link aggregation You can pair up to two units for faster speeds. One USB 3.0 port is available on the unit, which allows you to connect a printer or external hard drive. The RAX70 supports internet speeds up to 2 Gbps.

RAX70 is a WiFi6 router that features the most recent technologies to improve range and overall performance. OFDMA, MU-MIMO, beamforming). Only 6 internal antennas are used. The unit can emit up to 8 streams. This allows it to handle 40 devices and cover large distances (up to 2,500 feet).2) with wi-fi signal.

The unit is classified AX6600. That implies it supports the AX wireless protocol and has a maximum speed of 6.6 Gbps (three bands combined) – 0.6 Gbps on 2.4 GHz, 1.2 Gbps on the first 5 GHz band, and 4.8 on the second 5 GHz band.

The device also supports WPA3. Parental controls, VPN support, guest wi-fi, cloud storage, and DoS attack prevention are all included. It also works with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

RAX70 is just like any other Nighthawk router. Nighthawk app. This app will allow you to quickly set-up your router, monitor and modify your wi-fi network settings, including advanced parental control settings.

NETGEAR Armor It is included in the package as a 1-month complimentary trial and not as a lifetime subscription. You will need to pay for this software tool, which provides additional online protection. 

Here’s the final part of our selection for the best Windstream compatible routers and modems. We hope you found this article helpful in learning everything you need to know about Windstream-compatible modems. You can find more information in the FAQ section. You can leave a comment below to ask any questions you may have or share your Windstream experience.


Q: Is ARRIS compatible with Windstream?

A: It all depends on your modem and the type of service you are using. Most ARRIS modems work with cable modems. Windstream internet however is mostly DSL. Windstream internet offers cable internet service in some areas. You can use an ARRIS cable modem to access this service. You will need an ARRIS DSL modem, such as the Motorola ARRIS NVG510, if you are a Windstream customer.

Q: Can I use the Windstream modem only?

A: No, you don’t. Windstream allows the use of third-party modems. However, you need to ensure that your modem works with Windstream internet service. To be more precise, you have to look for a modem that is compatible with the type of internet that you’re paying for (DSL, cable, fixed wireless, etc.). 

Q: Is Windstream Internet dependent on a phone line

A: Windstream provides only DSL internet service in most areas. This type of internet depends on your phone line. So, if you are a DSL subscriber, then yes – you need a phone line. If you are, on the other hand, paying for Windstream Kinetic fiber internet or cable internet, then you don’t need a phone line. 

Q: Windstream is what type of Internet connection?

A: Windstream is a DSL internet service provider. Windstream fiber network is also growing rapidly, but it’s still much smaller than its DSL network. Windstream offers fixed and cable internet in certain areas. Windstream still offers DSL as its main internet service. 

Q: What’s the price of a Windstream modem

A: Windstream charges $10 per month to rent a modem. If you want a wireless modem (aka Windstream Kinetic gateway), you’ll be charged $12/month. You can’t buy the Windstream modem or gateway from Windstream, but you can find it online for $250 or less. 

Q: Which modem/router combination is best for Windstream?

A: It’s hard to pick just one, especially when we don’t know your type of connection. We recommend that you look for a VDSL 2 modem which supports bonded VDSL (brands such as Actiontec and ZyXEL). Motorola, Dlink, and Arris

Fiber users will just need a router – they can connect it directly to the ONT. TP Link, NETGEAR and ASUS are the best brands to choose for routers. For fixed wireless internet subscribers, the same applies. A DOCSIS 3.0/3.1 cable modem and a wifi router are required for cable internet users. 

Scroll up to see our selection of Windstream compatible modems. 

Q: What is Windstream internet like?

A: Windstream internet has many good points. The speeds and prices are competitive, there are no data caps, and you don’t have to sign a long-term contract. The biggest problem are probably Windstream’s DSL upload speeds. DSL internet speeds in general (both download and upload), are not great, but you can live with download speeds – you can surf, check e-mail, even stream movies. Unfortunately, upload speeds can be very slow.

Q: Can I save money by buying my own Windstream compatible modem

A: It all depends on which modem you choose (high end, entry-level), however you can save money by purchasing a Windstream compatible modem. In many cases you will save more $200 in three years. High-end equipment such as modems and gaming routers with high coverage will allow you to save money but still provide exceptional performance.

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