With the number of routers on the market today, it can be easy to simply do what your ISP suggests and purchase its own wireless router. In fact, recent studies show that most cable internet subscribers rent their routers rather than buying them outright. Even the wireless gateway for Comcast Xfinity seems like the easy way out, giving you a product that comes directly from your ISP so should work optimally to give you the internet speeds that you desire. The question remains, however, is it better to rent or own the router for Comcast Xfinity?
Buying A Wireless Router
- Ensured compatibility with Comcast Xfinity
- Comcast customer service can aid in the set-up
- Only a one-time fee
- The router can work with Comcast Xfinity wherever service is available
- The router will not work with other ISPs
- If you move, you may have to purchase a new router
- Functionality is limited to what Comcast’s service dictates
Renting A Wireless Router
- If you change ISPs, you have not paid for a router that won’t work
- If you are moving, whether your router is compatible will not matter
- In the event that something malfunctions with the wireless router, Comcast can simply replace it for you
- Comcast will automatically provide security and firmware updates
- The costs add up each month, costing more than it would have to have purchased the router
- It is not cost effective to rent a router unless you are moving sometime in the next year
Buying Other Brands
There is yet one alternative to working with a Comcast Xfinity router: you can buy another brand that is compatible with Comcast that is not Comcast.
- More options for router functionality, including customization options or higher broadband width capabilities to meet your needs
- Higher chance of compatibility with other ISPs
- Can be less expensive than the Comcast brand, depending on the features you need
- There is a risk that another brand will not work with Comcast. Check the list of Comcast compatible routers online before purchasing
- You will not receive customer support from Comcast should something malfunction with the router
- May not have the features that are provided with the Comcast Xfinity Gateway router, including pausing the Wi-Fi when you would like everyone on the network off, receiving notifications when other devices join the network and other specifications
The bottom line is that it is far more cost effective to purchase your own router than rent one from Comcast, unless you are planning on moving in the next few months to an area without Comcast. Otherwise, you are just spending extra money each month when you would have paid the equivalent of owning the router in less than a year.
Buying another brand of router can also be a more cost-effective approach since an off-brand is usually less money than Comcast’s brand and can have other features that allow you to customize the router to meet your needs. The catch, in this case, is that you need to be sure that the router is compatible with Comcast and that you know how to use it well enough to not need Comcast customer support.
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