Hi, I wanted to double check on something I found online. I found a post on another site that implies that you can sign up for XFi complete to get the unlimited data etc. and you can use the gateway in bridge mode still. Is this correct?
I currently have an XB6 gateway in bridge mode to a set of 3 Google Wifi pucks and this has been a super stable setup. When we first got the Google pucks we were using an older gateway that would have to be restarted every 10-14 days because the WiFi module would start misbehaving. I have never even used the XB6 for WiFi. I don't necessarily have a problem moving to the XB6 as long as it has a reliable WiFi module in it, however I would absolutely need at least one XFi pod and the "free if determined by our analysis" part has me worried it will decided with the more powerful XB6 we don't need one (two story 1900 sq ft, rectangle shaped house with the gateway at one end on ground floor).
The issue is my desktop PC does not have WiFi since I built it last year because one of our Google pucks lives in my office and I just hardwired the PC to the spare ethernet port on it. I know the XFi pods have a port for this as well, just don't want to drop $100 on 3 pods if I can just continue using our Google pucks and still sign up for the enhanced service.
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Well, I can now confirm this does indeed work. You can upgrade and leave it in Bridge Mode. Went ahead and tried it this evening. Took about 5-10 minutes for the unlimited change to show up across the website and app.
Well you can set "bridge mode" but it does NOT disable all the wireless radios. There are hidden networks still broadcasting on both 2.4 and 5 GHz bands. If you don't believe me, set it up and then use a WiFi scanner and you will see the unnamed hidden networks. Unplug the gateway, and they will disappear. The interference is there and reduced my WiFi throughput to devices.
I got gigabit service and took the "xFi Advantage" deal which was $20 and included the gateway and unlimited data, but had to return the gateway and buy my own eMTA (voice modem) and add the unlimited data plan separately. At that time, the unlimited data was $50/mo but Comcast has recently reduced it to $30/mo, so the $10/mo isn't a big deal for me to not have to use their hardware and be in control of my own network.
Yeah I know it still has the radios on for the public hotspot (unless you turn that off) but it hasn't been an issue for the couple years we've been running like this. Though on the previous gateway before the XB6 (XB4 I think?) you could actually switch the radios off and I did so before putting that one in Bridge mode. At this point I mainly wanted to avoid have to swap all my network hardware around and reconnect a ton of devices to new stuff so going this route ended up being the easiest and cheapest for now.