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Wed, Jul 31, 2019 2:00 PM

ANSWERED: How to optimize your Xfinity WiFi

Your home Gateway (such as the Xfinity xFi Gateway) broadcasts two radio bands to ensure an optimal in-home WiFi experience— one band focused on speed, and one focused on coverage.


These bands work best when they’re operating on a simple, personalized network. Simplifying and customizing your network will make it more secure and provide your devices with better connectivity, and we can help you get there.


Some Background: Understanding the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Bands

  • The 2.4 GHz band offers better WiFi coverage, but is prone to more congestion due to heavy network traffic.
  • The 5 GHz band offers less range, but delivers faster speeds thanks to less congestion and wider channels.



Understanding how xFi Gateways work

Xfinity xFi Gateways are all-in-one devices that deliver whole-home WiFi coverage, fast Internet speed and the ability to control your home network - for the ultimate connected experience.

xFi Gateways are "dual band," meaning that they broadcast two separate radio bands for their WiFi network - a 2.4 GHz band and a 5 GHz band. Historically, you were encouraged to use a different WiFi name and password for each band. You then had to choose which band your devices should connect to. Knowing which would provide the best connection and performance was guesswork.

That’s now changed. With the advanced intelligence of xFi Gateways, using the same name and password for the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands lets the Gateway sort out which one will provide a better connection at any given time. You will still have both bands and all the associated functionality, channels and range. However, by using the same WiFi name and password for both, devices will connect seamlessly to the most optimal band at any given time. This is called "band steering."

If you have an xFi Gateway (Arris 1682G, Cisco 3941T, Cisco DPC3939, Arris 3482G, Technicolor CGM4140COM or Arris X5001), you should simplify your WiFi and switch to using a single SSID - that is, use the same WiFi name and password for both your 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands, so you can take advantage of this seamless connection to the best network.

Changing your WiFi name and password

To get started using the same WiFi name and password across your entire home network, you can login to the xFi mobile app or Website. Once you’re logged in, look for the Network menu. Once you’ve located it, select the Edit WiFi option. From there, you can update your WiFi name and password—it’s that simple.


**Note**: You may need to reconnect some of your devices when using these new settings. Once it’s all said and done, your devices can choose between the best in-home WiFi connection at all times.


You can also automatically simplify to one name and password by selecting the Simplify Your WiFi tile under the Just for You header in the Overview section of xFi.


**Note**: If you have installed xFi Pods, the option to have split 2.4 and 5 GHz bands is disabled.


Added benefits of using one WiFi name and password for your network include fewer connectivity issues, a more secure home WiFi experience, and less troubleshooting. If you’re ready to get the most out of nation’s fastest Internet, log in to xFi today and get started. 



Frequently Asked Questions

I only see one in-home WiFi name now and I used to see two - what happened?
When you have a single name and password for your 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands, you will only see one option to connect. Please be assured that the second WiFi band is still working in the background to optimize your connection.

What action do I need to take?
If you aren't already using the same WiFi name and password for the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands, you should update your WiFi name and password. The easiest way to update your settings is to select Simplify Your WiFi from the Overview section of the xFi website or mobile app.

You can also update your WiFi name and password by selecting Edit WiFi from the Network section of the Xfinity xFi app or website. Learn more about xFi network settings. We'll take care of the rest in the background to optimize your network

How do I know if I have an xFi Gateway with this feature?
This is eligible on Gateway models Arris 1682G, Cisco 3941T, Arris 3482G, Technicolor CGM4140COM, Cisco DPC3939 and Arris X5001. To determine the type of Gateway you have, check the make and model information located on the bottom of your device. You can also log in to My Account and select Devices to view the make and model of your Gateway.

What is band steering and how does it work?
Band steering means the xFi Gateway determines which WiFi network band (the 2.4 GHz band or the 5 GHz band) is most optimal for a device's WiFi connection at any given time. It seamlessly changes to the best band based on signal strength and WiFi congestion thresholds. To enable band steering, the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands must have the same WiFi name and password.

What happens if the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz WiFi network band names and passwords are different?
If the WiFi network names and/or passwords are different, you will not be able to take advantage of band steering and will need to manually manage which WiFi network band each device connects to. This may lead to slow and intermittent connectivity issues. For example, if a mobile device is connected to the 5 GHz band and loses connection due to distance, you may need to manually reconnect to the 2.4 GHz band. With the same name and password, that process will occur automatically.



Additional Resources

For more information refer to Benefits of Using One WiFi Name and Password for Your Home Network

For additional assistance with your Xfinity WiFi see How to improve your Xfinity Wifi

For additional assistance with troubleshooting your Xfinity WiFi see How To Troubleshoot Your Home WiFi Network with XFINITY xFi

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