I am looking to either upgrade to Comcast’s XFinity or switch to FIOS. Looking for opinions of one or the other or both. Any and all are welcome. Thanks.
I have had FIOS for 5+ years now and have had zero problems with the service. I’ve never had Comcast so I really have nothing to compare to (prior to FIOS I had antenna tv and DSL internet). But I’ve had friends/co-workers who have nothing good to say about Comcast (especially customer service.I can’t comment on the quality of Verizon’s customer service because I’ve never had cause to call them with a problem).
When I moved into my current place 3 years ago, it was already wired for Comcast cable, but I did without for a week until I could get Verizon to come out and wire me for FIOS.
Left Comcast for FiOS in 2009. No problems, no outages and one minor price change.
I had Comcast when I lived in Baltimore and hated it. They were overpriced for what you get and their customer service was HORRIBLE. When I moved to where I am now, I opened the phone book and saw that there was someone other than Comcast listed, so I went with them, even though I knew absolutely nothing about them. That ended up being Suscom. I was very happy with them. Then they got bought out by Comcast. So now I’m stuck with Comcast again.
When they first bought Suscom it wasn’t so bad, though my internet connection speeds dropped quite a bit. Eventually that improved. But the customer service slowly went to hell. Now that it’s been a while, their customer service TOTALLY SUCKS. I really can’t emphasize how bad their customer service is.
Comcast forced us to Xfinity last year. Initially they gave us the digital adapters for free. Now, they have started charging us for them. So now I’m paying extra every month for something I didn’t want and gives me no additional benefit at all. And they raised their prices again. So once again, I’m stuck with a service that is very overpriced for what you get, and HORRIBLE customer service.
They have free movies, but they are all older movies and mostly aren’t worth watching. I don’t even bother to check their list any more. You can watch a lot of shows On Demand, but they only have the latest few episodes of most shows so if you see a new show you like you can’t go back and catch up. Mostly the Xfinity box works ok. We had a lot of stuttering problems, and after SEVERAL calls to customer service (have I said how much their customer service sucks?) they finally did something about it. The Xfinity box occasionally gets its brains scrambled. Once every few months we need to unplug it to reset it completely. This is getting less frequent, so I assume they keep patching its firmware. Once it resets, they apparently use trained hamsters with semaphore flags to exchange data at some point along the line, because it takes it a very long time for the box to download show info and that sort of thing, things that you would expect to take maybe 30 seconds or so on a computer. You don’t expect it to still be downloading over an hour later.
I have no experience with FIOS at all, but if I have a choice between Comcast and the other thing, I always chose the other thing.
Xfinity. No complaints, other than the fact that I know I’m buying from a monopoly that jacks up the prices. But that is an issue you run into with any broadband carrier (other than google fiber basically).
Service itself isn’t bad. I used to have 25Mbps and would easily get closer to 30 when I tested it. However when I got a deal (cable TV plus doubling of internet speed for a few dollars a month) the company said my speeds would double to 50Mbps, but now they are only about 35-40Mbps.
It doesn’t matter, the majority of servers do not upload anywhere near 25-50Mbps. But at 25, I was getting more than I paid for. At 50, I’m getting less. When my deal expires I’m going back down to 25.
I’ve had FIOS for 8 years now, and am pretty happy. Fast internet with no slowdowns that I’ve noticed, good channel selection, multi-room DVR. Every time the 2 year renewal option comes up, I do a comparision to the current Comcast packages, and wind up sticking with FIOS.
In case you care (and based on your username, maybe you do) - there are multiple methods available to download firmware to an STB, but the most common one (and slowest) is still in-band download. In this method, the download software has to take a tuner, and tune to whatever frequency the download is occuring on. It’s a broadcast method - the headend broadcasts packets on that frequency and the STB just listens for packets with the firmware for itself, and stores them until they’ve all been received. They come in slow for a few reasons - since multiple cable channels are muxed onto a single QAM frequency, the carrier sets the firmware broadcast rate very low (like 500 kbit/sec), so they can keep all the channels being broadcast on that frequency in place. Plus, the equipment broadcasting the firmware upgrades will usually be broadcasting packets for ALL STB hardware being supported from that head end, interleaved together, e.g. packets come in as STB_A_firmware (discard), STB_B_firmware (discard), YOUR_STB_FIRMWARE (store), STB_D_firmware (discard), etc.
So your STB may only be grabbing 1/10 of the packets being broadcast, and your effective data rate may be only 50 kbit/sec. Depending on your STB, it could require anything from an 8MB to a 100MB firmware file, so an hour-plus download certainly isn’t unlikely.
My experience with Verizon is that I can’t get it, and my experience with Xfinity is that they keep clogging my mailbox with junk mail despite my intense, prolonged and impenetrable disinterest. Which probably doesn’t help a lot.
I know people with Comcast, however, and to a person they fall into the categories “can’t get anything else” and “fucked over worse by AT&T.” If there is a “Comcast is AWSUM!!!” group, I’ve yet to meet a single member.
I have Xfinity at this time. I used to have Cablevision, and Xfinity internet is much faster. That may be more due to moving from a clogged city to the suburbs, though.
My comments on Xfinity:
–Though some movie channels are HD, most are not. I refuse to watch any non-HD content because it looks crappy.
–It has about 700 channels, but over 600 of them are not HD. Again, I won’t watch non-HD content.
–I knew that they were choking Netflix, but they conveniently denied it until Netflix recently paid them a bunch of money to stop it. I haven’t tried Netflix recently though, so I’m not sure if it has sped up.
–The on demand is fun at times. I went back and watched a few series that I hadn’t got in on at the start. Spartacus and True Detective are a couple of examples. It’s also nice to watch the recent pay channel movies or series on my schedule. Or just watch an episode a second time. I think that they want people to use on demand rather than Netflix, and they are figuring out how to make it more lucrative.
So it seems like they are reluctant to wholeheartedly get on the HD bandwagon and they don’t seem to want play nice with Netflix.
Hate to tell you guys you are all being ripped right off! In the UK, they are starting to roll out 150 mbps cable broadband!
Indiana, here. Can’t get Verizon FIOS. AT&T sucks. Comcast is over-priced and their customer service is for shit, but the internet is fast and generally pretty reliable.
Comcast not as reliable in my experience of about 8 years with Comcast and 7 with FiOS. With Comcast, internet outages a few times per year. With FiOS zero outages in 7 years, except when landscapers cut the cable and FioS had temporary cable laid to fix THE SAME DAY. Then they came back and trenched for conduit to protect the new run from future landscapers.
Customer support from Comcast is far better than the voice mail hell that is Verizon, but since you so rarely need it, that is tolerable.
For people with FIOS, was the install process relatively painless? I have heard horror stories of torn up walls etc.
Also other opinions still appreciated.
Had FIOS installed in two different houses, no problems at all. One was on on an exterior, 2nd floor wall, but the other was interior basement utility room. No torn up walls or mess.
It’s a little more involved than simply running a coax cable through the wall. There is a large, shallow box that has to mount to the wall ( about 1 1/2 x 2 ft high by 3" deep.) Cable has to come in from street, into that box, then back out of box to all your tv wiring. If you already have coax cable in your walls they just use that. If you don’t have cables running through your walls already, then yeah it could get messy (but the same applies to installing wires for traditional cable). Note that an experienced installer should be able to run the cables with minimal damage to your walls, be they employed by Verizon or Comcast.
The FiOS box is called an ONT (optical network translator) typically it is installed outside with a power supply inside. It must be grounded to your electrical panel. There is another type of ONT for inside installs that has an integrated power supply and requires no special grounding.
In both cases, the fiber cable is connected to it and it outputs Coax, phone and Ethernet.
Mine was painless, but it was a new construction house that I had made sure was prewired with RG-6/U from the basement to every room in the house. So they just had to run the fiber into the basement, install the ONT, and then make the connections from there to the pre-existing cables.
As turtlescanfly said, if they’ve got to run cables to the individual rooms for you, it’s all going to come down to the skill and experience of the installer. If you see him walking around the outside of your house with a 12" drill bit, stop him.
Mine was installed inside. I assume it just depends on whether there’s a place for it or not inside when they come out to do the install.
In my case, JIONT (Just Inside ONT) was used because they could not install an. ONT outside my electrical panel (where local code required grounding).
Made for a neat closet install with ONT and router on wall next to each other. Fiber to ONT then coax from ONT to router & TVs. It all connected up neatly with existing TV coax, Ethernet and phone wires.
My mom got fios about six years ago. No problems. They had comcast previously with poor service.
No experience with ComCast. Had Verison Fios for 18 months. Pretty much trouble free.