Every month you’re not just paying for internet access from Comcast/Infinity but also for a “Internet/Voice Equipment Rental” fee for the modem they so kindly gave you. While the amount of the fee varies depending on the Internet Service Provider (ISP) when it comes to Comcast/Infinity this fee is $13. That means every month you’re throwing $13 away (or $156 every year). Something you could’ve avoided if you had just went and bought your own modem in the first place!
To add insult to injury this fee continues to increase over the years. There’s a reason for this and it’s purely financial. Every quarter of the year, Comcast makes around $275 million and $300 million just from modem rental fees! Increase rental fees and you increase pure profit. You can avoid this racket by just purchasing your own modem that’s compatible and approved to work with Comcast/Infinity network.
Below is a table of every Comcast/Xfinity approved and compatible modems out there.
Comcast Xfinity approved modem list
|wdt_ID||Brand||Model||Modem||DOCSIS||Channels||Max Speed (Mbps)||VoIP||WiFi|
What is DOCSIS?
DOCSIS, or if you want to say a mouthful “Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification”, is a standard that makes it possible for an ISP to deliver internet access to you through a coaxial cable. We won’t bore you with the technical details of how exactly it works. To keep it simple DOCSIS makes it possible for you to receive internet.
So what should you be on the lookout when it comes to DOCSIS? The newer the DOCSIS version the modem supports then the higher the max download and upload speed it is capable of. This still limited by your internet speed however. Which is why it’s important to know that there isn’t a bottleneck.
As an example let’s say your internet subscription plan has a max speed of 2,000 Mbps (2 Gbps) and your modem only supports DOCSIS 3.0 which has a max speed of 1,000 Mbps (1 Gbps). That means you aren’t getting the most out of your internet because your current modem has a lower maximum speed. Half your speed potential (and money) is thrown out the window.
If you upgraded your internet to higher plan it would only make things worse not better. It’s best to have a modem that is capable of supporting a speed faster than your current subscription in case you want to upgrade later on. This way you won’t have to repeatedly buy a new modem as new technologies, like fiber optic, become more popular and available.
Below you can see DOCSIS has come a long way from its initial release in 1996 and with every version comes better max speed support.
|DOCSIS Version||Max Download||Max Upload||Issue Date|
|DOCSIS 1.0||40 Mbps||10 Mbps||1996|
|DOCSIS 1.1||40 Mbps||10 Mbps||1999|
|DOCSIS 2.0||40 Mbps||30 Mbps||2001|
|DOCSIS 3.0||1,200 Mbps (1.2 Gbps)||200 Mbps||2006|
|DOCSIS 3.1||10,000 Mbps (10 Gbps)||1,000 Mbps (1 Gbps)||2013|
|DOCSIS 4.0||10,000 Mbps (10 Gbps)||10,000 Mbps (10 Gbps)||2019|
What are channels in a modem?
Channel numbers are often listed as a number showing how many channels are dedicated to downloading and how many are to uploading. Channel numbers are formatted as “downstream channels × upstream channels”. For example, a 16×4 modem means that it has sixteen downstream channels and four upstream channels to work with.
More channels means a higher speed capability. Just think of it as a highway with more lanes meaning faster data transfer. A modem with a 16×4 channel setup is going to be more capable than one with a 4×4 setup. In our comprehensive table of Comcast/Infinity compatible modems you can filter them by the following channel combinations:
If you want the highest max speed modem then aim for a 32×8 modem. These can reach up to 10,000 Mbps in max speed depending on which model you choose.
What's VoIP support?
VOIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol and makes it possible to use phone service through the internet. This is useful if you use a home phone. If you exclusively use a smartphone for calling then this won’t matter much to you. Nowadays you have apps like Messenger, Snapchat, Whatsapp, and others that allow you take advantage of calling over the internet.
What's WiFi support?
If your modem has WiFi support that means you can use to wirelessly receive internet without having to get a router. If you bought a modem without WiFi support and later needed WiFi then you would either have to get an additional router or another modem that supports it out of the box. We recommend you get a modem with WiFi support as means you won’t need to get two devices instead of one.