xfinity

Xfinity is a branded subsidiary of Comcast Corporation. Comcast was founded in 1963, and is the largest cable company in the world (by revenue). The company provides cable service, Internet, VoIP, and in 2011 entered the home security system market. Despite being a dominator in the cable market, Comcast has suffered from various publicity problems.

Over the years they’ve been found to have the worst customer service satisfaction rating not only of any other company, but also of any government agency in America – including the IRS. In a bizarre twist, as their customer service rating has plummeted, revenue has increased. Judge for yourself whether Xfinity Home is the security system for you by taking the following into consideration.

Pros:

  • Some savings by bundling Xfinity cable/Internet/security
  • One bill for all of your services
  • Online help site and live chat
  • Home automation available
  • Wireless equipment

Cons:

  • Limited services compared to some dedicated home security companies
  • Higher prices than competitors, for basic equipment and monitoring
  • System requires a compatible broadband Internet connection
  • Potential for a breach in the system by using a radio jamming device, as revealed on Wired.com
  • Dismal customer service reputation
  • Well-known reputation for bills creeping up over time, for unknown reasons

Packages and Services

You can subscribe only to the home security service, but of course, Xfinity offers deals when bundling with Internet and/or other services in order to get you to add Xfinity Home to your existing subscriptions.

Xfinity Home Secure

Installation fee: starting at $99

Monthly service fee: $29.99/month for the first year. This rate increases during months 13-24 of the contract, to $34.99/month. If you’re opting for Home Secure 300, which adds video monitoring capability, as well as fire and CO monitoring, your rate will increase to $39.99/month for months 13-24.

What’s included:

  • One touchscreen control panel
  • Three door/window sensors
  • One motion sensor
  • One wireless keypad
  • Battery and cellular backups
  • Remote arm/disarm
  • Email/text alerts

Blast! + Secure

This is a combo of one of the faster Xfinity Internet services with Xfinity Home Secure 300.

Installation: self-install with a kit that is mailed to you (with shipping charges; other DIY companies offer free shipping) or professional installation starting at $99

Monthly service fee for both services: $69.99/month for the first year. The rate increases to $84.99 for months 13-24.

What’s included:

  • Internet service with up to 75 Mbps download speeds
  • Touchscreen controller
  • Three door/window sensors
  • One motion sensor
  • One wireless keypad
  • One lighting controller
  • Fire and CO monitoring
  • Remote arm/disarm
  • Email/text alerts
  • Battery and cellular backup
  • Live video monitoring
  • Remote lighting/small appliance/thermostat control

Fire and CO and video monitoring, as well as thermostat and appliance control, all require additional equipment purchase.

From there, the packages move into a variety of options combining their high speed Internet with cable television and home security. Prices range from $89.99/mth for Blast! Internet, 140 cable channels, and basic home security with video and home automation, up to $159.99/mth for Extreme 150 Internet, 260 cable channels, plus home security. A two-year contract is required for all deals.

Home Automation

Xfinity Home offers their smart automation service completely separately from their home security, for those who don’t need the security component. You must have an Internet connection for the home automation service to function.

Installation: self-install with kit, or professional installation starting at $99

Monthly service fee: $19.95/mo for the first year; it is unclear how much that rate goes up for the remainder of the two-year contract.

What’s included:

  • One indoor/outdoor camera or smart thermostat
  • One outlet controller
  • One hub
  • Live video monitoring with clips or remote thermostat control with Ecosaver Smart Thermostat Technology
  • Remote lighting and small appliance control
  • Email/text alerts
  • Water detection alerts (available with additional equipment purchase)
  • Remote door lock and garage door access (available with additional equipment purchase)

Optional Equipment

Compared to some of its competitors, Xfinity Home has a basic set of optional equipment available for purchase. You can get one camera, two different thermostats (one Nest, one Xfinity Home), a few different types of locks, including a garage door device, extra window sensors, a smoke sensor, water sensor, and one lighting controller. If you want CO monitoring, you’ll have to purchase compatible equipment.

Xfinity is also capable of doing a takeover on your existing home security equipment if you already have a system installed and don’t want to change to new equipment.

In a Nutshell

There’s nothing really “wrong” with Xfinity Home Security, not that one could put their finger on anyway. The rates are a bit pricey, and the features limited, compared to some major competitors. The customer service is notoriously flawed. On the other hand combining your services results in one convenient bill. You will save a bit of money by bundling, and in the first year, you’ll get a discounted rate on all your services. However, over time those rates could increase.

Xfinity does not have a lot of experience in the home security game, but they do have a foothold in millions of American’s homes, and they are taking advantage of that to tack another charge onto already bloated bills.

There are plenty of other companies that offer equivalent or better services for an equal or lower price, so unless you have a particular attachment to having your internet, cable, and home security from the same company, you might want to consider shopping around.

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