Xfinity Home Security Review 2020
In our last Xfinity Home review, we gave the service a solid 3 out of 5 stars. (Craig’s video review will give you an idea of how we felt.)
But when we recently updated our home security rankings, we realized we could no longer score Xfinity that high. Xfinity Home’s prices are hard to pin down, most of the equipment lags behind other brands, and its customer service (through Comcast) may be the worst we’ve ever encountered.
|Xfinity Home||Monitoring price range||Contract||Home automation integrations||Learn more|
|Starts at $30.00/mo.||Unclear||Some Zigbee||View Bundles|
Data effective 11/12/2020. Offers subject to change.
Like most companies, Xfinity Home security uses professional monitoring to keep an eye on customer security systems. It has multiple monitoring centers so that your professional monitoring stays online 24/7. We’ll talk a little more about this later.
If you’re looking for a self-monitored system, Xfinity’s not right for you (although the company recently added a self-monitored camera to its roster—more on that later).
Xfinity pricing and contracts
Xfinity’s unique in the home security industry because its prices swing wildly, depending on the location. The company treats home security pricing the same way it treats cable and internet costs.
The Xfinity Home Security systems are mostly average, sometimes even below average. (More on that in a minute.) Alone, the cost may not be worth it. But if you’re looking for security, internet, phone, and cable, or if you already have an Xfinity service, bundling with a Quad Play package may be an excellent deal.
Here are some benefits of a bundled Xfinity Home package:
- Use the X1 DVR to see who’s calling or security alerts on your TV
- Watch TV on the internet through Xfinity’s website
- Watch Netflix through your X1 DVR (with TV and internet)
Planning a movie night? Order pizza, trigger the lights to turn on for the delivery driver as they approach, and even pause your movie with a single IFTTT recipe.
Contracts are going out of style. Sadly, Xfinity still uses them. But it’s unclear just how long they are these days. We aren’t sure from their website whether they’re still offering 36-month monitoring contracts or something else. (We do know that the equipment payback plans require 24-month contracts.)
Xfinity home security equipment
What’s included with the Xfinity Base Home system?
An Xfinity Base Home system includes the following:
- Three door/window sensors
- Motion sensor
- Touchscreen controller
The door and window sensors and motion sensors: nothing special. You put them where you most need them, and they help keep you safe like every home security system’s sensors.
The touchscreen controller, on the other hand, is a neato-burrito proprietary device. It can be handheld in addition to hanging, so you can walk around with it and use it as a little security tablet.
Want something that doesn’t come in one of the preassembled packages? Or need to get more sensors? Comcast sells the following equipment directly if you need to add to your security:
- Indoor/outdoor cameras
- Outlet controllers
- Smoke detectors
- Zen thermostat
- Motion sensors
- Door/window sensors
- Wireless keypads
You’ll soon also be able to use Leviton Decora Zigbee light switches, dimmers, and plug-in modules with an Xfinity Home security system.
Only a few of the devices come from Xfinity itself, and the additional equipment list is a bit thin for a brand that doesn’t make its own stuff. Since the system’s compatibility is limited, most of the equipment is meh approaching blah.
Two of the biggest buying decisions with Comcast Xfinity are whether to add video to your plan and whether to use Comcast’s proprietary camera. Xfinity has both video streaming and streaming + recording as options.
If you buy an Xfinity camera, you get live video streaming included. Right now, Xfinity saves up to 150 video clips and 150 images each day, which are stored for 30 days. From there, you can download and share it if you want.
You can also integrate other cameras like Nest Cam, Canary Cam, and Arlo Pro into your system. For ideas, you can check out our posts for Best Indoor Cameras, Best Outdoor Cameras, and Best Motion Detector Cameras.
|Learn more||View Camera|
Data effective 11/12/2020. Offers subject to change.
When you have the Xfinity X1 DVR, you can use the voice remote to say things like “front door camera” to view your feed.
Xfinity Home has the following benefits:
- 24/7 professional monitoring
- Cellular and battery backup
- Remote arm and disarm with the Xfinity Home app
- Real-time notifications when activity is detected
- Additional features included with equipment purchases
Many people underestimate the importance of a cellular connection and battery backup that won’t disappear at the first sign of trouble. Xfinity hits these critical aspects of home security.
While you don’t have to subscribe to Xfinity’s other services, we think Xfinity Home is the best deal when bundled. You can get some awesome features, like speaking commands for the entire system using the Xfinity X1 DVR‘s voice remote. Alexa who?
Xfinity home automation and mobile control
While Xfinity bundles have their own voice-controlled features, the system doesn’t integrate with an Amazon Echo, Google Home, or Apple Homekit. Instead, Comcast has the following partner connections to help smarten up your home:
Xfinity’s mobile app turns your phone into a remote control for your whole home. While it has some bugs, we had a good experience with it, and other users rated it well on Google Play and iTunes.
Remote arming and disarming
One of the biggest benefits of getting Xfinity Home is accessing your system from afar.
Lighting and thermostat control
Turn on some mood lighting and raise the heat without getting off the couch during movie night. Or turn off the lights before you doze off without leaving your comfy bed.
You can see your alerts via text, email, app notifications, and on-screen notifications on your TV (if you get the Xfinity X1 DVR). You can customize the rules, too, so you only get necessary alerts.
Xfinity’s a professionally installed system. You’ll have to set aside time for a technician to come to your house.
Installation fee: Starts at $60
Xfinity customer experience
Xfinity doesn’t offer a classic email customer service option, but you can use Reddit, Twitter, or the direct chat to get help quickly. And, of course, there’s always the phone. Or you can go to a brick-and-mortar Xfinity store if you like that better.
Just to give you a heads up, though: Xfinity’s part of Comcast, and Comcast customer service is legendary for all the wrong reasons. Xfinity Home reviews overwhelmingly state that Comcast reps are unhelpful, even rude, and that just making contact with the company can be a struggle.
But there are some good things too. Ordering’s easy, installation’s convenient, and the professional monitoring aligns with industry standards.
You can order an Xfinity Home system online, which is a breath of fresh air compared to systems like ADT. You don’t have to call in to get what you need.
As we mentioned, with Xfinity, the technician will come to your home to install the system.
Have a previously installed system like an old ADT or Protect America alarm? You may be able to use parts of your existing system and save money on new equipment costs. Just speak with your technician about a takeover.
You’ll get 24/7 monitoring through COPS Monitoring, which has six professional monitoring centers. You also get backup batteries and 3G wireless cellular connections. With these features, you’ll stay protected from intruders and connected to the monitoring station while avoiding the annoying sirens that come with a system that powers off abruptly.
Xfinity Home recap
Overall, the Comcast Xfinity Home security service covers all your bases, just at an unpredictable cost. If the price is right where you live, Xfinity Home is most effective when you bundle. Add TV, Wi-Fi, and maybe even home phone calling to your plan. That’ll give you a discount on home services, and you can use your phone or X1 Voice remote to control just about everything in your home.