Comcast frequently offers promotional deals for their Internet, telephone, wireless, and cable TV plans. Since Xfinity deals and bundles are quite varied, making a choice can be difficult. Based on my research through their various websites and call centers, here are the best offers I've been able to find. How to Install Xfinity Internet and TV Xfinity X1 is a worthy upgrade to Comcast's legacy cable TV boxes and has advanced smart TV features. Preparing for Xfinity installation: Someone who is 18 or older has to be present during the installation to make placement-related decision and sign the Service Agreement. You should make sure that all cable outlets are accessible, or that you at least know where you want them installed. Make sure that your computers meet all of Xfinity’s minimum system requirements. You should also ensure that your TVs and entertainment centers are all at least three or five feet away from the wall. Xfinity comes with two installation options: self-install and technician installation. Self-installation is free, and you can either have them send a kit with the gateway and instructions or simply buy your own and call for help hooking it up over the phone. I recommend the kit option for most people — it's really simple and well documented. For technician installation, it's worth asking the technician to show you how to use the Touchscreen Controller, the Xfinity Home app, how to remotely arm/disarm the system, and how to prevent false alarms. Regarding how long the Xfinity service installation takes, it should be around two to four hours according to Comcast. However, the process often takes longer (or the techie is often late). My recommendation? Take the day off to be sure. The good news is that Comcast offers two-hour appointment windows, and a $20 credit if the technician is late ($25 for Comcast systems in Illinois). Xfinity Equipment Options Xfinity equipment basics DVRs TV Boxes Modems CableCARDs Xfinity DVRs Xfinity features four DVR equipment options: TiVo – 80GB (Gigabytes) of storage, 500 SD and 75 HD hours of storage, record up to four shows at once, built-in WiFi, and gain access to a combination of Xfinity TV and On Demand content courtesy of TiVo Premiere. DVR – 80GB of storage, 40 HD hours of storage, record one show while watching another, or record two shows while viewing a recording. HD DVR – 500GB of storage, 300 SD and 60 HD hours of storage, record one show while watching another, or record two shows while viewing a recording, and gain access to Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound (where available, of course). X1 DVR – 500GB of storage, 300 SD and 60 HD hours of storage, record up to four HD shows simultaneously while you’re watching a fifth show on your TV, gain access to apps like Facebook and Pandora, and watch recordings from any room in your home. Also, the latest episodes of the top 100 shows are preloaded. CableCARDs If you have a CableCARD-ready TV or a TiVo, you can use a CableCARD to access video services without having to rent one of Comcast’s TV boxes. Just keep in mind that CableCARDs offer only one-way digital cable channels. That means you won’t receive Xfinity On Demand, Pay-Per-View, or gain access to their interactive guide. Xfinity TV boxes let you view digital channels and access the On-Screen Guide, Xfinity On Demand, and Pay-Per-View. The On-Screen Guide will provide you with access to TV listings, parental controls, search tools, and program information. Xfinity Modems and Routers Xfinity deals generally come with a combined modem/router “gateway” unit. This plugs into the coaxial cable jack on your wall and lets you connect directly via ethernet or wirelessly over Wi-Fi. Most routers they rent to customers these days come with dual-band, which means you can set up a separate 5 GHz band that's faster and more secure for newer devices such as Macbooks, iPhones, Pixels, and etc. Comcast claims their modems are easy to use, install, and that you’ll get to take advantage of 24/7 tech support and automatic security updates. In my experience as a long-time customer before moving out of their service area last year, they live up to this promise. How to Save on Equipment If you’re getting an Internet + TV bundle, it’s best to try and use your existing modem or router if it’s compatible. If it isn’t, you should think about buying one instead of renting. You can use Xfinity’s online tool to find compatible equipment or check if your modems or routers are compatible. Here’s a guide to help you out too. I know that renting seems easier, but it will cost you around $10/month in addition to all other monthly expenses. Also, if you’re not getting a bundle, you won’t get to take advantage of free installation. The installation cost depends on your service area, and it's usually around $50. Fortunately, in this case, you can rely on Xfinity’s self-install guides. They are pretty straightforward, and most of them come in video format, which is a nice touch. Alternatively, you can try negotiating the installation price with Comcast. According to some consumers, they are open to that. Xfinity Bundles: How Do They Compare to Cord Cutting? Pros Free installation DVR service free for 12 months with Triple Play offers Streampix free for three months with Triple Play offers Fast Internet connection speeds 30-day money-back guarantee Cons Low channel variety Standard DVR service isn’t too impressive Double Play bundles aren’t very remarkable Bundles are a bit expensive You feel pressured into a one or two-year contract 30-day money-back guarantee might only go up to $500 Let’s start with the things I liked. First, the free installation that comes with Xfinity bundles is a nice touch, and a good way to encourage people to opt for such deals. Also, these bundles (as well as Xfinity stand-alone TV plans) feature a 30-day money-back guarantee. Other perks I liked were the fact that Triple Play offers include DVR service free for 12 months, that you get Streampix (basically, unlimited access to popular movies on your TV and mobile devices) for three months, and Xfinity’s Internet connection speeds which go as high as 200 Mbps (megabits per second). Unfortunately, there are some caveats. For one, Xfinity bundles don’t feature as much channel variety as satellite providers like DirecTV. Even the most expensive Triple Play offer only comes with around 260+ channels. On top of that, the standard DVR service Comcast offers for free isn’t too impressive. Yes, some Triple Play offers come with the X1 DVR, but it’s only the most expensive ones (approximately in the $159,99-$199,99/month-range). Speaking of which, most Xfinity bundles are quite pricey. If you’re on a tight budget, they will most likely not appeal to you — especially when you consider the steep post-promotional price increase for Double Play offers. It’s true that Double Play bundles are a bit more cost-efficient, but they aren’t very exciting. Ironically, the only Double Play offer that’s really attractive is the Preferred Latino one. So, if you were looking for Latino programming, it might appeal to you. Other things I didn’t like included the fact that you feel pressured to sign a one or two-year agreement if you want an Xfinity bundle since they’re even more expensive without a contract, and the fact that — according to their fine print — the 30-day money-back guarantee might only go up to $500. 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee applies to one month’s recurring service charge and standard installation up to $500. Depending on what you purchase, that detail might or might not matter. All in all, I’d say that Xfinity bundles are a bit over-hyped, but they can offer decent value compared to other options on the cable market. (AKA there aren't many.) Xfinity Deals: Decent Perks Despite the Price Tag Xfinity’s Best Feature: Large On-Demand Selection Xfinity deals offer access to a very varied selection of On Demand videos. According to some of their customers, Xfinity On Demand sometimes even features new movies a month ahead of Netflix or Redbox. What’s more, approximately 90% of those movies are usually free. While Xfinity deals might be expensive, they do offer great value for all that money — especially when you think about the DVR variety and the free installation perks that come with bundled services. And if you’re looking to add fast Internet connection speeds into the mix, Xfinity has got you covered. However, if you not sure about Xfinity and would prefer better-priced deals that offer more channel variety, I recommend checking out Dish’s or Verizon’s deals before making a commitment.