- home internet
CNET delves into Ookla's latest speed test data and sees what it says about the country's largest cable broadband provider.
Trey Paul editor
Trey Paul is CNET Senior Broadband Editor. His more than 20 years of experience as a writer and editor includes time spent at CNET's sister site, Allconnect, and working with clients including Yahoo!, Google, The New York Times and Choice Hotels. An avid movie lover, Trey also works as a film and television critic while earning his degree in New York.
Professionalism Home and broadband internet, including plans, service providers, internet speeds and connection types. Films and film studios. reference
- MA in Film Studies from NYU and interviews with Conan O'Brien, Stan Lee and some of his greatest childhood Star Trek idols
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Our internet connections are increasingly becoming the lifeblood of our households. Are youHomework, taking additional online courses, streamingThe last of usor renovation of your premises with everythingbest smart home devices, yourweb serveris almost as important as suppliers of gas, water and electricity. What is one of the best ways to make sure your ISP keeps its promises? Run a speed test.
The speed test will give you a snapshot of the megabits per second download and upload speed you get from your ISP. There are severalgood internet speed testsyou can use outside. if you areComcast XfinityIn particular, Xfinity boasts its own speed test, available atSpeedtest.Xfinity.com. But while I'm digging into the Xfinity speed test results, this page will largely mirror the data fromSpeedtest.net. This is a tool by Ookla, which publishes quarterly results collected from millions of users using its speed test.
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Where do Xfinity's speed test scores rank among the top US ISPs?
For the first quarter of 2023Xfinity has fallen from the number one spot among the largest Internet service providers in the country. He landed a little earlierSpectrum, who held pole position in mid-2022.
Fastest Internet Service Providers in USA
|Giver||Average download speed|
|Internet AT&T||180 Mb/s|
To qualify as one of the country's leading ISPs, an ISP must appear in at least 3% of all test data collected over a three-month period. For example,EPB, a Chattanooga, Tennessee-based provider, boasts the country's fastest 25 gigabit-per-second household Internet access plan. But since it's only available in that part of the country, it won't appear on the national list (although it's certainly registered in Tennessee).
It's also important to note that this 3% threshold is based on customer test data across the country, not just whether the provider covers 3% of the country.Tmobile home internet, for example, is now available in 89% of the country, according to the Federal Communications CommissionNational broadband map. However, the user base, which has grown to over 3 million subscribers, was not large enough to be included on this list.
Does this mean that every Xfinity client will get 233Mbps?
While Xfinity's speed test results from Ooklo gave an average download speed of 233Mbps, that doesn't mean that every Xfinity subscriber is getting at least 233Mbps. But it shows that most Xfinity users will have a consistent online experience. In fact, Ookla has a "Consistency" ranking - which shows the percentage of scores recorded above broadband speed (25Mbps download and 3Mbps upload) - and Xfinity also landed near the top of that ranking with 91.7%.
It can also be combined withRecent FCC disclosuresthat over 90% of participants experienced an actual average download speed that was at least 95% of the download speed advertised by their ISP. Certainly, this is another good way to define consistency for the client. But what are the advertised speeds offered by Xfinity?
Internet speeds available from Xfinity
Most ISPs offer three to five levels of speed, but Xfinity is unique in that it offers seven to eight different internet speed options, depending on your location. It's a little more choice for customers than usual.
Xfinity of speed levels
|To combine||75 Mb/s download, 10 Mb/s upload|
|Connect more||200 Mb/s download, 10 Mb/s upload|
|Quick||400 Mb/s download, 10 Mb/s upload|
|Super fast||800 Mb/s download, 20 Mb/s upload|
|Gigabit||1000 Mb/s download, 20 Mb/s upload|
|Gigabit addition||1200 Mb/s download, 35 Mb/s upload|
|Gigabit X2||2000Mbps download, 50Mbps upload|
|Gigabit Pro||6000Mbps download, 6000Mbps upload|
Brian L. Roberts, president and CEO of Comcast,he said during an earnings call in Januarythat Gigabit Plus customers account for approximately one-third of Xfinity broadband subscribers. It's a little more than thatThe latest OpenVault datafor Internet users in the entire US, whose gigabit (and above) usage is 15%. Overall, according to OpenVault, the majority of customers (55%) opt for a 200-400Mbps plan. Other figures show that 10% choose 100-200Mbps, 8% fall into the 50-100Mbps category, 7% choose 500-900Mbps, and 5% have plans below 50Mbps.
With Xfinity, all plans are hybrid fiber and coax connections, so users' download speeds will be much faster than their upload speeds. The only exception is the Gigabit Pro plan, which is 100% optical. Though theoretically available nationwide Xfinity,FCC numbersshow it's only available to about 4% of Xfinity's customer base.
US states where Xfinity was the leading ISP
|country||Average download speed|
|New Hampshire||240 Mb/s|
|New Mexico||233 Mb/s|
Comcast's Xfinity internet service is available in 39 states and the District of Columbia, giving it a decent chance of taking the top spot in many states. The slowest was in Massachusetts at 227 Mbps, and the fastest download speed was 245 Mbps in Colorado and Kentucky.
U.S. cities where Xfinity was the top ISP
|Grad||Average download speed|
|Albuquerque, New Mexico||238 Mb/s|
|Aurora, Colorado||260 Mb/s|
|Baltimore, Maryland||209 Mb/s|
|Colorado Springs, Colorado||255 Mb/s|
|Denver, Colorado||232 Mb/s|
|Fort Wayne, Indiana||203 Mb/s|
|Fremont, California||207 Mb/s|
|Fresno, California||248 Mb/s|
|Memphis, Tennessee||185 Mb/s|
|Miami, Florida||202 Mb/s|
|Portland, Oregon||218 Mb/s|
|Sacramento, California||233 Mb/s|
|San Jose in California||237 Mb/s|
|Seattle, Waszyngton||217 Mb/s|
|St. Paul, Minnesota||215 Mb/s|
|Stockton, California||244 Mb/s|
|Tucson, Arizona||245 Mb/s|
When it comes to city speeds, Ookla's figures only count the 100 most populous cities in the country. On this list, Xfinity was the fastest provider in 17 cities, which again placed it in second placeSpectrum, which took first place in 18 US cities. Memphis, Tennessee leads the Xfinity, with an average download speed of 185 Mbps (which also places it at the bottom of the top 100 US cities list). Xfinity achieved the highest average download speed in Aurora, Colorado at 260 Mbps.
Xfinity Speed Test: Final Thoughts
If you've read any of CNET's home web coverage, you've heard us say itoptical internetadvantagesCable internetjust fine in every way. This is certainly true. However, most fiber ISPs with a large national reach --,Century Link,Border,OptimumIVerizon- do not offer fiber-only plans. Their coverage areas also include a mix of slower connection types such asdigital subscriber line. The speed test results in these areas will be much lower than the fiber numbers, making the overall number of providers lower. But Xfinity and other cable providers that don't have to deal with DSL throttling will see much more consistent performance across the country. In this way, the cable outperforms the fiber-DSL combination.
Xfinity Speed Test FAQ
Why would I bother to run the Xfinity Speed Test?
If you feel your internet connection isn't working well, running a speed test is one of the quickest ways to see if you're getting the speeds advertised by your ISP. If you're getting the internet speed you're paying for, perhaps your difficulties mean you need to upgrade to a faster plan. But if your speed test results show speeds below what you should be getting, further investigation is warranted. It may be a problem with your service provider (especially if you ran the test with an ethernet cable connection) or you found problems with your Wi-Fi connection.
How fast is the cheapest Xfinity plan?
Xfinity is unique in that it offers at least seven different speed levels. In addition, there are different prices for these plans depending on the area of the country you are in. In some parts of the country, the cheapest plan is the 400Mbps plan; in others, the cheapest option is 75 Mb/s. Finally, Xfinity also offers a low-income option, Internet Essentials, for eligible customers. This plan is 50-100Mbps.
What is a good speed for Xfinity?
During a recent earnings call, Comcast executives noted that nearly a third of their customer base is subscribed to a 1200Mbps plan. However, Xfinity speed test data from Ookla shows that Xfinity's average download speed is 233 Mbps, and recent data from OpenVault shows that the majority of US subscribers (around 55%) are getting 200-400 Mbps. Ultimately, "good speed" depends on the needs of your household. The more users (and connected devices) you have, the more you need a higher level of internet speed.