Comcast is boosting speeds for most of its Xfinity Internet customers

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,573   +174
Staff member
In brief: Comcast is in the process of boosting Internet connection speeds for millions of customers in the US. Starting this week, new and existing customers subscribed to the Performance Starter / Connect package will see download speeds increase from 50 Mbps to 75 Mbps while those with the Performance / Connect More tier will go from 100 Mbps to 200 Mbps.

Similarly, Performance Pro / Fast customers will be bumped from 300 Mbps down to 400 Mbps down, those with Blast / Superfast packages will see their download cap increase to 800 Mbps from 600 Mbps and Extreme Pro / Gigabit customers will go from 900 Mbps to 1 Gbps.

Comcast brands its packages differently based on which part of the country you live in.

Bill Connors, president of Xfinity at Comcast, said the number of devices connected in Xfinity households has skyrocketed 12x since 2018, adding that the need for fast, reliable and secure Internet will continue to grow.

The changes will impact more than 20 million Xfinity households across the US, we're told.

Speed boosts are always welcome. In actuality, those on entry-level tiers will get the most mileage out of the changes, especially in households with multiple members vying for bandwidth at the same time.

Last month, Comcast launched a multi-gig deployment that will reach more than 50 million homes and businesses across 34 cities and towns with 2 Gbps Internet service before the end of 2025. The company's Wi-Fi 6E Gateway, which launched earlier this year, plays a key role in connecting consumers' many wireless devices.

Comcast is continuing to push its entire network to 10G. Not to be confused with mobile 5G (which stands for fifth generation), 10G is the name of the technology that will enable Comcast to eventually deliver multi-gigabit symmetrical speeds over the cable connections that are already installed in tens of millions of homes and businesses, without having to dig up yards and neighborhoods (a subtle nod to fiber installers you may have seen disrupting your neighborhood lately).

Image credit: Pixabay

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wiyosaya

Posts: 8,410   +7,845
I have to wonder if they are feeling pressure from competing ISPs. In my area, a local company started offering Fiber to the Home (FTTH). A few years after they started offering their service, Spectrum bumped up most subscribers to 200Mbps without any extra charge.

Several people I know got the bump, and I got a letter in the mail stating - "Congratulations, we're doubling your speed at no extra charge "- to 200Mbps. Just a few days before that, I cancelled my service with Spectrum because I got 500Mbps symmetric from the local ISP provider for about $20/mo LESS than what Spectrum was charging me for the 200Mbps service. I had to laugh at that letter, and was greatly pleased please at being finally able to say "So long and thanks for all the Fish" to Spectrum and their total crap customer service. As an example, when I called to cancel the Spectrum "retention rep" tried to tell me - "You have to be careful. Services like that have contracts" even though there was no contract for the FTTH. :rolleyes: Now, however, Frontier is rolling out FTTH in our area, too. Frontier DOES have a contract, and I cannot see moving to them for any reason.

Competition is a good thing, and it will lead to more stories like mine - which is why I wonder whether Commie Cast is only acting because of competition and an attempt to retain customers.
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 1,093   +1,999
Yeah, at this point more speed simply gets you to the data cap faster. I actually ran into the cap enough running LHC simulations on BOINC, so had to stop that. Was 1TB at the time (Sum of down and up IIRC), looks to be 1.2 TB now. Lame.

Here's something to ponder about data cap and Xfinity:

Xfinity offers unlimited data you can pay for on your internet plan for an extra $30 a month.

Xfinity does not offer that unlimited data plan for $30 for me.

Xfinity does, however, offer unlimited data using their xFi Complete package. This means you sign into a new contract and then have to use their hardware. So now you have to pay more on a new contract, plus you have to pay for equipment rental. Going this route would cost me an extra $50-60 a month for the same internet plan I have now.

What kind of horseshite is that?
 

brucek

Posts: 1,348   +2,023
Spectrum recently updated my 200mb/sec plan to a 500mb/sec one. Sure enough, speed test shows that exact change. In practical daily life, I've noticed no difference at all. Just an observation, not really a complaint. I do wonder if I had a lot more people living at my house if it might be a noticeable real improvement for supporting say 10 people each watching their own high bandwidth video stream.
 

Buhaj

Posts: 148   +240
As a European I find it baffling how the US still has data caps in 2022, in Europe it is only a thing in mobile data plans.
 

trparky

Posts: 1,159   +1,319
As a European I find it baffling how the US still has data caps in 2022, in Europe it is only a thing in mobile data plans.
One word... Greed.

Most of these companies were granted monopoly status in whatever region they were operating in because of the hideous cost to deploy a network in the region. Once the network was built out, they of course took full advantage of said monopoly status and charged people out the butt for service. Why? Because why not? Most people only have one choice.

I have two choices: Spectrum and AT&T. Luckily, I have AT&T Fiber to the Home with no data caps and AT&T is deploying fiber as fast as humanly possible in my area to compete with Spectrum which has been eating the breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the last few years.
 

someOtherGuy

Posts: 58   +32
Here's something to ponder about data cap and Xfinity:

Xfinity offers unlimited data you can pay for on your internet plan for an extra $30 a month.

Xfinity does not offer that unlimited data plan for $30 for me.

It needs to be done over the phone, talking to a representative. The self-service way might or might not work. Technically there shouldn't be a reason for it to not be available since the "cap" is what's technically harder to achieve but there might be some political reason instead.
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 1,093   +1,999
It needs to be done over the phone, talking to a representative. The self-service way might or might not work. Technically there shouldn't be a reason for it to not be available since the "cap" is what's technically harder to achieve but there might be some political reason instead.
My last call to them resulted in the tech trying for 20 minutes to sell me crap I didn't want.

Tech: We can offer you this plan that does such and such.
Me: No thank you. I don't want a plan. I just want to remove the TV service I don't use.
Tech: Okay, I'll update my notes, give me a minute.....

Tech: We can offer you this other plan that does such and such plus this other thing. How does that sound?
Me: No. I already told you I don't want anything else, just the TV service that I don't use, removed.
Tech: Okay, I'll update my notes, give me a minute.....

Tech: We can send you out an XBox [Xfinity cable box] and start you with this plan that does such and such, plus this other thing with something else.
Me: No. Why the hel| would I want a new service for TV streaming when I didn't use the one I already had. Just cancel my TV streaming.
Tech: Okay, I'll update my notes, give me a minute.....


It went on like that for 20 minutes. My tone became very annoying, but I'm proud of myself for not cussing out the lady. I know what it's like to work customer service and being forced to hound customers about crap they don't want to try and generate sales.

I'd rather never have to talk with their customer service again because when you do and you change anything, they start you on a new contract and F you over.
 

wujj123456

Posts: 80   +49
Yeah, at this point more speed simply gets you to the data cap faster. I actually ran into the cap enough running LHC simulations on BOINC, so had to stop that. Was 1TB at the time (Sum of down and up IIRC), looks to be 1.2 TB now. Lame.
If you run LHC, especially the virtualbox ones, make sure you have a squid cache setup. Either local with some proxy configuration, or on router that handles HTTP caching transparently.

For the few months WCG was down when I mainly ran LHC, my WAN usage increased like 200-300GB per month, but LAN jumped 2-4 TB, with 90%+ bytes served from router's cache directly. Wouldn't have survived the data cap without local caching.
 

wujj123456

Posts: 80   +49
While I appreciate Comcast's free boost, faster download with same data cap that no one can really use is hardly useful, but it won't improve upload even a bit after so many years.

The only reason I am on a higher tier is not for download, but upload. 6Mbps was not even enough for my occasional upload from BOINC, remote VC for work, etc. The upgraded "Extreme Pro" 1Gbps still comes with a pitiful 20Mbps upload, but at least that's usable with some traffic shaping on the router.

It's very clear Comcast will only allocate minimal channels for upload to cut down overall cost. They keep beating the drum of DOCSIS 4.0, but the reality is that DOCSIS 3.1 is already far more capable than the upload speed they offered, if they are willing to configure the channels differently. The city wide fiber project was recently approved at my place, and I really wish in a few years some alternative fiber ISP will show up at my place.