Comcast Xfinity: Everything you need to know about cable’s biggest player

With streaming services like Sling TV, PlayStation Vue, and DirecTV Now on the rise, as well as live TV offerings from Hulu and YouTube, it may seem like cable’s days are numbered. If you’re only looking for a handful of channels, that may be the case, but if you’re looking for a massive suite of channels with the best, most stable picture quality, cable still can’t be beat.

Still, old-fashioned cable leaves a lot to be desired in a few areas, especially in our increasingly mobile world. While there are a number of options out there for digital cable, Comcast’s Xfinity TV aims to offer a more modern experience than the competition. We break down the latest from Comcast to see how it stacks up in the modern streaming world.

What is Xfinity TV?

Xfinity TV aims to take everything that you like about cable — hundreds of channels, local programming, and full-fledged DVR options — and combine it with features that you are likely familiar with from your favorite streaming services.

Then there is the issue of overall picture quality. With streaming services, especially live streaming services, your experience will vary greatly depending on a lot of factors. With cable, you’re essentially guaranteed the same picture quality no matter what. If you’ve ever thrown up your hands in frustration when your favorite streaming service looks like a web video from 1996, this can be an important factor.

How is Xfinity TV different from standard cable?

Speaking of streaming services, a number of them are included in Comcast’s TV offering, including perhaps the heaviest hitter of them all, Netflix. Rather than switching between your set-top box and a piece of dedicated streaming hardware like a Roku or Amazon Fire TV device, you can go from watching a live football game to catching up on your latest binge-watching obsession with the flick of a remote.

With streaming services, you aren’t limited to watching your favorite movies or TV series at home. With Xfinity TV, the same goes for your DVR recordings thanks to the service’s Cloud DVR feature, with lets you take your recordings with you on the road. Xfinity On Demand also offers a rotating selection of hit movies and the latest TV shows that are available to watch anywhere.

How can you get Xfinity TV?

Signing up for Xfinity TV is like signing up for any other cable offering, meaning it’s nowhere near as simple as signing up for a streaming service. You’ll need to choose a channel package, and there is equipment to install, so you’ll either need to wait for the company to install your hardware or install it yourself using the Xfinity Self-Install kit. If you’d prefer to wait for installation, Comcast offers two-hour appointment windows, seven days a week, so you won’t need to take a day off of work to wait for the installation.

To use the Xfinity X1 DVR, you’ll need to subscribe to both Xfinity TV service and internet service. There are a number of different bundles available, so it’s worthwhile spending some time on the Xfinity website to choose the package that works best for you.

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