“name”: “Easton Smith”
“description”:”Xfinity just broke into the cell phone space, but can it compete with other providers? Find out how Comcast’s foray into mobile stacks up.”,
“author”: “Easton Smith”
“name”: “Xfinity Mobile Review”,
- Cheap, flexible data plans
- Runs on Verizon’s powerful network
- 18 million Wi-Fi hotspots
- Only for current Xfinity customers
- Data caps, throttling, and slowdowns
You already know Xfinity from Comcast for its internet, television, and home security services. Now, meet Xfinity Mobile.
The first thing you should know about Xfinity Mobile is that its mobile services are available only to people who’ve already signed up for Comcast/Xfinity residential internet. (If that’s a deal breaker for you, check out these other individual and family plans that compare in quality and affordability.)
The second thing you should know about Xfinity Mobile is that the prices are good, but maybe not as good as they appear at first glance. We’ll give you all the nitty-gritty details.
and Xfinity Mobile) will be offering customers some perks and allowances. To learn more about these perks and how other companies are responding to COVID-19 see our updated page on the issue.
Xfinity Mobile unlimited plans
The cheapest “unlimited” plan around
All Xfinity Mobile plans come with free unlimited talk and text. You just pay for the data, in one of two ways: either “By the Gig” or “Unlimited”. Figuring out which of these two plans is right for you may take a bit of math. But don’t worry, we’ve got the cheat sheet.
It boils down to this: if you think you will use more than 3GB of data a month, then the unlimited plan becomes cheaper than paying by the gig.
At $45 a month, Xfinity’s unlimited data plan costs less than most of the top-rated unlimited plans out there (besides Sprint’s absurdly cheap Kickstart plan). It’s a full $15 cheaper than T-Mobile’s cheapest unlimited plans and $20 cheaper than AT&T’s. That sounds pretty good.
So what’s the catch?
For one, you have to be an existing Xfinity customer. (We know, that’s kind of a bummer if you’re excluded.) And then if you get the service, you’ll have to deal with painful data throttling, capping, and slowdowns.
Details of Xfinity’s unlimited data plan
- Data speeds: You’ll get download speeds of 5–12 Mbps and upload speeds of 2–5 Mbps. However, just like with Xfinity internet, once you hit their soft data cap (in this case, 20 GB), you’ll get deprioritized . . . meaning your speeds will get slashed to almost nothing (1.5 Mbps download and 750 kbps upload).1 Yikes.
- Streaming quality: Xfinity has introduced throttling to its data streams,2 including limiting most users to 480p resolution on videos. It’s not great quality, but it’s not nothin’.
- Mobile hotspot speeds: Xfinity’s throttling also extends to mobile hotspots, which are capped at 600 Kbps. That’s fine for basic websites and email, but don’t expect to stream much of anything at that speed.
Xfinity Mobile By the Gig plan
This plan is like the bulk section of the grocery store: instead of buying pre-packaged data, you buy it raw, by the gig.
This plan is ideal if you use data only once in a while to send a picture to your kids or reply to an email. You could pay as little as $15 a month, and still get unlimited calls and texts.
Xfinity Mobile 1 GB plan
By the Gig plans really pay off if you’re strategic about your data usage. With free access to Xfinity’s 18 million hotspots, you’ll often be able to use the internet through Wi-Fi rather than 4G, especially if you’re in an urban area.
If you live out in the country, though, you may want to think twice (and check out Verizon or T-Mobile for more data and great coverage).
The logic of bundling is simple: if you give the company more business by signing up for additional services, then the company will cut your rates.
Comcast (Xfinity’s parent company) has taken this a step further. Xfinity Mobile’s cheap service is available only to those who have Xfinity internet already. The downside is that they don’t have additional bundling deals to entice new customers. That means, for instance, that you can’t get a discount for buying Comcast cable TV and Xfinity Mobile.
Xfinity Mobile vs. the competition
As we’ve said, Xfinity Mobile’s plans are cheap, but not the cheapest. Here’s a quick look at how the company’s plans compare to similar offerings from other carriers.
Xfinity Mobile plans comparison
Xfinity cell phones and devices
An iPhone for you, a Galaxy for the spouse, and Motorola flip-phones for the kids.
Need a better camera to up your Insta game? Xfinity Mobile has deals and payment plans for the newest Apple, Samsung, and Google devices.
Here’s a look a some of Xfinity’s most popular phones.
Maybe you’ve got a bad habit of dropping your phone in the pool, or maybe your dog loves the taste of new phones. Don’t worry, Xfinity Mobile also has a few budget Motorola and LG options that are cheaper to replace.3
If you’re not feeling satisfied with Xfinity’s phone offerings, check out our weekly deals page for the latest discounts and promotions on brand new devices!
Xfinity Mobile coverage
Xfinity coverage is among the best, thanks to Verizon.
The Washington Post has reported that, thanks to an “airwaves agreement,” Comcast’s Xfinity has the right to use Verizon’s cell towers.4 That’s good news for Xfinity customers, since Verizon’s network tops our list for best mobile coverage.
Fierce Wireless reports that Xfinity Mobile customers are actually marginally more satisfied with their coverage than Verizon customers,5 which may be due to the large number of Wi-Fi hotspots that bolster Xfinity Mobile’s network.
Xfinity Mobile customer service
Don’t hold your breath. You’ll probably be on hold a while.
Mobile is a relatively new service from Xfinity, so there isn’t much data out there regarding their customer service. But if we go by the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) report for 2018, it doesn’t look like they will be winning any awards.
According to the ACSI, Xfinity came in 7th place among internet service providers and 10th place among fixed-line telephone providers.6 That’s not very good—but honestly, no ISP has great customer service. Hopefully Xfinity improves things for its mobile customers.
Recap: Is Xfinity Mobile good?
There’s just one adjective to describe Xfinity Mobile service: unique. Because of its bundle-only model, plan structure, and rock-bottom prices, it really is like no other mobile carrier.
But is that a good thing? You’ll have to decide for yourself—and it’ll depend on what you’re looking for.
- Plans: There are only two types of plans: Unlimited and By the Gig. Unlimited is cheap compared to other carriers, but comes with more restrictions than we’d like. By the Gig, though, is great for people who don’t need much data.
- Performance: Verizon’s network ensures that Xfinity Mobile’s coverage is on par with the best of the best, though unfortunately, Xfinity throttles its mobile data.
- Customer service: If Xfinity’s past performance is any indication, don’t get your hopes up too much.
- Overall: A solid, cheap plan for those already in the Xfinity universe, though you have to deal with data throttling, slowdowns, and poor video streaming quality.
If you’re reading to plunge deeper into the Comcast universe with Xfinity Mobile, you can sign up easily online.
Q: Does Xfinity Mobile have overage charges or hidden fees?
The short answer? No.
The longer answer? Still no, but one Xfinity support forum does mention minimal taxes (around $2–3 a month) for each line’s unlimited calling and text.
Q: Does Xfinity charge an activation fee?
Xfinity Mobile doesn’t charge an activation fee, assuming you’re already an internet customer (otherwise, signing up for Xfinity internet is the activation fee). Compared to leading carriers like Sprint and AT&T, this is a great perk for returning Xfinity customers.
Q: Should I get a warranty or insurance for my Xfinity Mobile phone?
If you’ve got butterfingers, then you’ll be happy to know that Xfinity Mobile phones come with a 12-month manufacturer warranty.
They’ve also teamed up with Assurant to offer Xfinity Mobile Protection Plan, which has no-fee early upgrades, accidental damage protection, lost or stolen coverage, and personal TechPro help.
Q: Does Xfinity Mobile let you bring your own phone?
Yes! Just make sure to check availability for your phone model.
Q: Can I keep my phone number?
Yes! And if you want a new number, you can do that too.
Q: What’s Xfinity’s return policy and early termination fee?
Xfinity Mobile’s customer agreement states that you can cancel service anytime without a fee. Plus, the return policy gives you 14 days to return devices from the date of shipping.
Q: Does Xfinity Mobile have a military discount?
No, but if you are signed up for other Xfinity services, you may be eligible for a gift card.
Q: Does Xfinity Mobile have a student discount?
No, but you can check if you’re eligible for Xfinity internet discounts.
- Xfinity, “Broadband Disclosures”
- Fierce Wireless, “Confirmed: Comcast’s Xfinity Mobile to Slow Video Streams, Hotspot Connection Speed”
- Xfinity, “Devices”
- The Washington Post, “Comcast Wants to Be Your New Cell Carrier”
- Fierce Wireless, “Here’s Exactly Who Xfinity Mobile Is Stealing Customers from . . . and Why”
- American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), “ACSI Telecommunications Report 2019”
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