In the US, Comcast’s internet service called Xfinity is everywhere. With the launch of their mobile phone service, they created over 1 million wireless hotspots. They also have wireless hotspots enabled by default for their internet service. If you have the Comcast Xfinity service, you probably have the hotspot. Of course, Comcast discourages you from turning off this extra network so more can enjoy Xfinity WiFi hotspots. Their speeds can be fast, depending on where you are and the number of people on the service. There are some great reasons to connect to a VPN while using Comcast’s internet service. We’ll speak more about that shortly, but first, take a look at our list for the best VPNs for Comcast Xfinity.
What is Internet Throttling?
Recently, the US federal government reversed their policy on “Net Neutrality”. If you have heard the term but do not know what it means, we’ll explain. Net neutrality means that ISPs like Comcast can not give preferential treatment to certain types of activities. With the reversal of net neutrality, they can limit download speeds on streaming services, games, P2P networks and more. Some companies feel that it is fair because a small percentage of users take up more bandwidth than others. That costs them quite a bit of money. By throttling, they can provide fast service to more people and try to keep prices down. While these practices are not illegal, they are definitely questionable. Since some ISPs have monopolies in several areas, there is no pressure not to limit their customers.
Does Comcast Xfinity Throttle Internet Activities?
An independent study by Electronic Frontier Foundation confirms that Comcast definitely throttled P2P Networks and Netflix in 2007. However, we are not sure if they still engage in such practices. Things have definitely changed since the report came out. Though bandwidth has gotten much cheaper in recent years, it may still happen.
Ways To Test Xfinity Throttling
Fortunately, there are a few different ways to test for throttling. You can run the Internet Health Test on the Battle for the Net website. It shows several different phases where throttling can occur. If your speed stays consistent, it is likely Xfinity is not throttling you. If you are on a mobile device, there is a better option. Northeastern University and the University of Massachusetts Amherst developed an application called Wehe. This great app is available for iOS and Android. What it does is test speeds by using 7 other applications. Those are Youtube, Skype, NBC Sports, Vimeo, Amazon, Netflix, and Spotify. If everything checks out, you will get messages on each app telling you that there is no differentiation. If it does find an issue, it will let you know that differences were detected (you are being throttled). If so, Comcast Xfinity may still has an ongoing issue of throttling their users.
Why You Should Use a VPN for Comcast Xfinity
Now, to the reasons we mentioned earlier. If you think Comcast might be throttling your connection, a VPN is a good idea. By using a VPN server, you create a secure an encrypted connection to the server of your choice (usually the closest one to your location). That means you hide your activity from your ISP. Effectively, Comcast can’t hit what it can’t see. The only thing they see is that you are using encrypted traffic bandwidth. On top of that reason, using a VPN will protect your privacy. Even if you think you have nothing to hide, that still does not mean that Comcast Xfinity should know what you choose to download, stream, or do online. Now, we’ll take a look at the best VPNs for Comcast Xfinity.
With ExpressVPN, fast VPN access and MediaStreamer act as a Smart DNS service to unblock access to geo-restricted content. Since Comcast has been known to block Netflix and other streaming services, you can use both features to help you watch anything you want to see. The benefits of using ExpressVPN quickly add up.
|90||148||2,000||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$12.95||$99.95||30 day|
They also have a large footprint in the US and have great speeds. You will find that they perform well in speed tests, so you won’t have any issues streaming, torrenting, or even just browsing. There are other great features to the service, and you can enjoy them when you sign up for service.
While ExpressVPN is sold at a higher price point than the other services in our list, the value is high given the size of their network and service features. You can connect a computer, handheld device, router, and game console (SmartDNS) with a single VPN account for just $6.67 a month.
IPVanish is one of our favorites. That is because they have fast servers and a large footprint in the United States. It is certainly a great compliment to normal Xfinity speeds, even with the encryption overhead. You should still have enough speed to do anything you want to do online without having to worry about Comcast throttling your actions.
|60||89||1,000||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP, IKEv2||$7.50||$58.49||7 day|
Additionally, IPVanish hosts servers on every continent other than Antarctica. The network has consistently been the fastest VPN in our speed tests. You can select a location or an individual server, depending on your preferences.
When it comes to value IPVanish is hard to beat. They offer unlimited access to their VPN network and custom software for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Amazon Firestick and more for $7.50 a month or $58.49 a year. That works out to just $4.87 a month on the annual plan. A 7-day money back guarantee covers all new members.
StrongVPN is headquartered in the United States. You will find that they have one of the strongest networks in the country. When it first began in the 90s, you had to pay per user, number of server locations you wanted, and protocols used. Now, members have full access to their world network.
|26||46||682||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$7.50||$52.49||7 day|
If you want to stream content from other parts of the world, you will want to check out StrongVPN’s newest feature, StrongDNS. It is a Smart DNS service that will help you get around geo-restrictions. You will find that to be a useful feature to access Netflix or other streaming services if you travel.
StrongVPN offers a 25% discount to our readers. That is in addition to their normal discounts. You can enjoy unlimited VPN and free SmartDNS access for just $7.50 a month or $52.49 a year. The pricing works out to just $4.37 a month, and new users are covered by a 7-day money back guarantee.
One big benefit of using NordVPN is the fact it is located in Panama. Some users find that to be an advantage to others that headquarter themselves in the US. NordVPN has a strong presence worldwide because of the multiple server locations. When you sign up for service, you get full access to their network all around the world for a very good price.
|59||70||3300||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$11.95||$69.00||30 day|
NordVPN may be newer to the scene than some of its’ competitors, it has definitely made a splash in the community. You find a quality product at a good price. They too have a large footprint in the US and should give you enough speed while on Xfinity. It is definitely one worth taking a look at.
If you are looking to torrent or unblock popular streaming services from around the world, NordVPN is a great choice. They are one of the only VPN services that can still unblock Netflix. You can sign up for unlimited VPN and SmartDNS service from just $2.75 a month with a 3-year membership.
As a user, Private Internet Access (PIA) provides you with several different privacy options. In the past, you had to set up a profile for each VPN server you wanted to use. Now, connecting to a US server or any of the other ones in different countries is easy to do. Their PIA team has organized their servers by region, country, and city. All of their server locations are listed in alphabetical order by country. If you plan on torrenting, make sure you choose a P2P server. They have specific ones set up.
|30||47||3282||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$6.45||$59.95||7 day|
There are a lot of torrent (P2P) users who love Private Internet Access. One of the reasons is because of the kill switch feature. If your connection drops, it will kill your internet as well until it is securely re-connected so you are safe.
PIA offers a Windows client and other apps that are simple and easy to use. However, you won’t want to take it for granted. PIA offers different levels of privacy protection depending on your needs. Private Internet Access offers VPN from just $3.25 a month.
Above, we have tried to show you the best reasons and options for VPNs while on Comcast Xfinity and explained a few points. However, you can feel free to take a look at our top 10 list of VPN providers. The bottom line is, there are many good products out there that can help you. It all depends on what you are looking for. We hope we have shed some light on Comcast Xfinity to help you make the best decision you can.