XFINITY vs RCN: Side by Side Comparison

Enter your zip code below to see if XFINITY or RCN offers service in your area.

XFINITY vs RCN

Comparing Xfinity and RCN is like comparing a gladiator and a ninja — they may look different, but both put up quite a fight. Speeds and pricing are often very similar in areas where Xfinity and RCN compete for your business, so take a close look at details like TV offerings and promotional pricing when making a decision. Customer reviews should also be given consideration.

XFINITY from Comcast AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (844) 246-9494
  • Support: (800) 934-6489

$39.99 to $84.95 / mo.

10 mbps to 300 mbps

2.0 mbps to 25 mbps

59%59%

Cable

Current: 1st ↑ (+1)

RCN AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (858) 251-1062
  • Support: (800) 746-4726

$29.99 to $29.99 / mo.

10 mbps to 1,000 mbps

Up to 20 mbps

--

Cable

Current: 10th ↑ (+2)

XFINITY OVERVIEW

Xfinity by Comcast provides broadband internet, cable TV, and phone service via their hybrid fiber coaxial network. Xfinity is one of the most widely available cable Internet providers in the US.

RCN OVERVIEW

RCN is a cable broadband Internet, TV, and phone provider. They also offer business broadband plans, and fiber-to-the-building (FTTB) connectivity in some select areas.

XFINITY INTERNET DEALS †

  • $39.99 for 25 mbps Cable
    • 25 mbps ↓ and 5.0 mbps
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $74.95.
    • some areas have a 1TB data cap
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (844) 246-9494 to setup service.
  • $59.99 for 200 mbps Cable
    • 200 mbps ↓ and 10 mbps
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $87.95.
    • some areas have a 1TB data cap
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (844) 246-9494 to setup service.
  • $84.95 for 100 mbps Cable
    • 100 mbps ↓ and 5.0 mbps
    • some areas have a 1TB data cap
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (844) 246-9494 to setup service.
Last updated on 4/20/2017

†All plans not available in all areas or to all customers. Verify details with XFINITY.

RCN INTERNET DEALS †

  • $29.99 for 25 mbps Cable
    • 25 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • RCN prices their plans regionally. We do our best to collect these regions and zip codes, but always verify pricing via phone or online in your specific zip code.
    • Modem: $7/mo
    • Call (858) 251-1062 to setup service.
Last updated on 3/4/2017

†All plans not available in all areas or to all customers. Verify details with RCN.

XFINITY: DATACAPS From 1024 GB/mo.

We have found plans that include datacaps. XFINITY offer plans with data caps regionally or nationwide. Be sure to verify plan details before purchasing.

RCN: NO DATACAP FOUND

We have not found plans that include data caps. This doesn't mean RCN doesn't have data caps, just that we haven't found them when collecting their plans. Always verify plan details before purchasing.

XFINITY's TECHNOLOGY

Xfinity by Comcast offers Internet, TV, and phone service to consumers primarily via their hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) network. They are also rolling out fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) installations in some regions.

Hybrid Fiber Coaxial (HFC) networks are used globally by cable providers to deliver broadband internet access to consumers. In short, HFC networks deliver a fiber optic connection to a node within a neighborhood, which then branches off to service 25-2000 homes.[3] By using this network structure, Comcast and other cable providers are able to take advantage of their existing coaxial infrastructure to offer competitive broadband speeds at a lower up-front installation cost to the company.

In the case of FTTH installation, fiber optic cable is run directly to consumers residences or businesses. This network structure is preferred over hybrid networks. Unfortunately, they aren’t widely available due to the high costs associated with running fiber optic cable.

RCN's TECHNOLOGY

RCN offers broadband Internet, digital cable TV, and phone plans via three network types: hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) “cable”, DSL, and fiber optic.

RCN’s “cable” HFC network is their most widely available option. Like most cable broadband networks, data is delivered via fiber to a local node within subscriber areas, where the data is switched over to an electrical signal for transmission via the existing coaxial cable networks originally installed for cable TV service. Using existing copper cables for the last leg of the journey makes cable broadband somewhat slower than true “fiber” connections, but saves the high up-front cost of purchasing and installing brand new cables for the company.[4]

RCN’s fiber plans generally terminate inside or very near the building, allowing for speed several times those offered by traditional DSL and cable networks. Fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) connections are widely considered the premium option for home Internet access, and true FTTH connections offer the highest bandwidth and lowest latency available today.

XFINITY RATINGS AND REVIEWS

40%40% Customer Rating

39.6% recommendation rating according to 83,816 verified XFINITY users.

RCN RATINGS AND REVIEWS

65%65% Customer Rating

65.2% recommendation rating according to 1,761 verified RCN users.

XFINITY COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

XFINITY from Comcast Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

RCN COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

RCN Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

Internet is your lifeline, so quality matters

Customer service isn’t a “nice to have” when you rely on your connection

Broadband providers don’t have control over environmental problems that might cut out service. What they do have control over is making sure any issues are addressed, explained, and fixed as soon as possible. With more consumers than ever relying on broadband as their primary means of communication for work and personal purposes alike, getting a fast response when you call your provider isn’t just a “nice to have.” When judging the overall satisfaction of a company’s customers, don’t trust just any online review.

There are two types of review you can trust: IP-verified ratings and ACSI ratings. You can see the ACSI ratings for both providers above — these are based on data collected manually by the American Customer Satisfaction Index, the national standard in accurate consumer happiness metrics.[1] Also keep an eye out for the term “IP-verified” for provider reviews (you’ll see these ratings attached to plans and providers throughout BroadbandNow.) IP verification essentially attaches each review to a reviewer’s specific computer “address.” IP-verified reviews also confirm that the person leaving a rating is actually using a network subscription from the provider in question.

Routers, modems, and other hardware considerations

Buying your own hardware can cut costs overall

Modem and router rentals are common among Internet service providers. Renting hardware like this makes sense for less technically-able customers, since the company simply services and replaces the hardware if you ever have issues. However, if you’re willing to spend a little time shopping and installing your own, buying personal hardware could save hundreds in the long run.[2]

The cost of a decent mid-grade modem and router is generally available at approximately the cost of a year of renting. Once that year is up, it’s five to ten dollars a month you don’t have to spend for however many years you continue subscribing to that provider. The catch here is that providers have different standards so far as which modem models they are compatible with. You can usually get a list of compatible routers through the provider’s website, or by calling customer service. If you move frequently, consider renting to play safe.

Last updated on 4/20/2017.

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