Starlink vs. Xfinity

Starts at $120
Data Cap Range
Unlimited standard. Up to 2TB priority
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Comcast Xfinity
Starts as low as $19.99
Data Cap Range
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Andreas Rivera
Apr 25, 2024
Icon Time To Read7 min read

Is Starlink as good as Xfinity?

When it comes to rural internet, satellite is often the only option. Starlink has quickly risen to be the preferred choice for satellite internet in a few short years. This provider seemingly offers everything you need in rural internet.

However, if you’re fortunate enough to have some cable internet options available, one of the best in the business is Xfinity by Comcast. It offers fast speeds at very reasonable prices, making it especially attractive compared to Starlink’s expensive plans.

Xfinity is the stronger overall service, but Starlink’s wider availability makes it a great choice for rural customers. Which one is right for you? Let’s jump in, compare, and find out.

Starlink internet plans

Equipment cost
Starlink Standard (Residential)$120.00/mo.$599.00Up to 150MbpsUnlimited
Starlink Priority (Business)$140.00–$500/mo.$599.00 or $2,500Up to 220MbpsUnlimited
Starlink Mobile (Regional and Global)$150.00–$200.00/mo.$599.00Up to 50MbpsUnlimited
Starlink Mobile Priority$250.00–$5,000.00/mo.$2,500.00Up to 220MbpsUnlimited

Starlink’s personal plans are based on where you’ll use the service, which makes the choice fairly simple. If you’ll be using it at home, go for the Standard plan. Starlink Mobile is the company’s on-the-go service for RVs, camping, and other travel uses. Starlink Mobile Priority is the most luxurious option, geared toward boat use and mobile businesses, with a dish that allows for in-motion use.

There are no speed options with each plan—they have the speed that they have, which can vary somewhat based on location. The only real choice you’ll need to make is whether you want global data with the Mobile plan and how much priority data you want for the Mobile Priority plan. Apart from that, you can just sign up order on Starlink's website.

Xfinity internet plans

Equipment cost
Connect$20.00—$25.00/mo. for one year*$14.00/mo.Up to 150Mbps1.2TB (or unlimited for an additional $30.00/mo.)
Fast$55.00/mo.$14.00/mo.Up to 400Mbps1.2TB (or unlimited for an additional $30.00/mo.)
Ultrafast$60.00/mo.$14.00/mo.Gigabit1.2TB (or unlimited for an additional $30.00/mo.)

*Promotional price expires 5.1.24. Prices and availability vary by region.

Unlike Starlink, Comcast’s Xfinity internet offers a wide variety of plans based on speed. This means you can tailor your plan to your needs without overpaying for speeds you won’t use. However, these are all residential plans—you can’t take Xfinity internet on the road with you. (Though the company offers cell service in some areas.)

Xfinity plans greatly vary from place to place, so you may not see the same selection as someone in a different city. However, the core remains the same: lots of speed for relatively little money. In the table above, we’ve highlighted the plans that offer the best overall value.

Speaking of speed, there’s plenty on tap here, with up to 1,200Mbps available in many areas. That should be more than enough for even heavy streamers and large households. But even at the low end, Xfinity offers faster speeds (and lower latency) than Starlink.

Enter your zip code to see if Xfinity is available in your area.

Starlink vs. Xfinity: Pros and cons

Starlink pros and cons

pro Wide availability
pro On-the-go and in-motion options for tents, RVs, boats, and other travel
pro Lower latency than other satellite services
pro Unlimited data
pro Fast speeds for a satellite provider
con Some plans are extremely expensive
con Large, up-front equipment fees
con Overtaxed network can slow speeds in certain areas

Starlink finally eliminated its waitlist, so it now offers fast satellite internet service to the entire U.S. including Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. That wide availability, paired with its comfortable speed range of 25–150Mbps, makes it a great option for people needing internet in remote, rural, or off-grid places. Plus, it has unlimited data, which is enormously hard to come by in the satellite internet space.

But even with all those huge updates, Starlink’s flaws are glaring. Now that it has nationwide availability, its network of low-earth orbit (LEO) satellites is growing overtaxed, and Starlink users have noticed speeds fall, especially in rural towns, not even to mention Starlink Mobile users who have the least-prioritized speeds out of all Starlink plans.

Plus, compared to cable internet, Starlink has expensive equipment and monthly fees for slower speeds than the 1,000Mbps players like Comcast’s Xfinity and even Spectrum Internet can match easily. 

Xfinity pros and cons

pro Variety of plans to choose from
pro Fast speeds up to 1,200Mbps in most regions, 2000Mbps in select markets
pro Highly affordable pricing—strong value for money
pro Much lower latency than satellite
pro Option to bundle TV with internet to save money
con More limited availability than satellite, especially in rural areas
con Can’t be used on the go
con Unlimited data costs extra

Xfinity comes out of the gate with strong pros. It may not offer unlimited internet for free, but its high 1TB data caps are so roomy most people will never notice, and unlimited data is at least available (the fact that it costs extra is still a con). But Xfinity has blazing fast gigabit internet speeds, extremely good monthly pricing and no major latency constraints like satellite internet does.

But Xfinity’s plans can be a bit confusing because they’re offered regionally, and, you guessed it—those regions don’t cover a lot of rural areas. Cable internet works by laying copper wires from Xfinity’s hubs all the way to its users houses, and all that wiring can be expensive to meet out. So if your area doesn’t have enough people in it—or any—Xfinity won’t consider it worth the price, so you’re out of cable internet luck.

Plus, unlike Starlink, Xfinity’s cable technology can’t be packed up on the go with an RV internet plan. Starlink Mobile can go on the road with you, if you’re willing to pay $150 a month (and upfront for the equipment, of course). 

Much of internet connectivity ends up coming down to your specific needs and largely your location. But knowing all your provider options—and exactly what features they provide you with—really helps. We’ve tested both services, so we’ll break Starlink and Xfinity down so you can see which will really work best for you.

Starlink vs. Xfinity: Performance

Starlink is generally one of the fastest satellite internet providers on the market. It not only offers excellent speeds, but lower latency than competitors, thanks to its low earth orbit (LEO) satellite constellation.

However, Xfinity is just faster. No current satellite service offers speeds that can compete with cable, and Xfinity is one of the fastest cable providers available. Finally, cable will almost always have lower latency than satellite, which makes a big difference with gaming or video chats. This holds true not just for Comcast, but most cable internet compared to satellite internet.

Starlink vs. Xfinity: Data

The addition of unlimited data makes Starlink a strong choice for people in rural areas who want high-speed internet with fewer compromises. Unlimited data means you can use your high-speed connection without worrying about incurring additional charges, and really lets you get the most out of your internet service.

While Xfinity doesn’t offer unlimited data by default, the 1.2TB data cap is pretty generous, and you can add unlimited for $30 per month if you need it. That said, this is something you don’t have to do with Starlink, so we have to give it the nod.

Starlink vs. Xfinity: Price

Satellite internet tends to be pricey, and Starlink is no exception. The most affordable plan starts at $120 per month, which is not cheap for internet access. Additionally, Starlink requires you to pay for your equipment upfront, rather than rolling the cost into your monthly bill, and these charges aren’t cheap. You can expect to pay either $599 or a whopping $2,500 for equipment, depending on the plan you select.

Xfinity, on the other hand, is very affordable. Plans start at as low as $20 per month. Even the fastest plans are priced very competitively, with a 1,000Mbps plan costing just $60 per month.


Looking for more affordable rural internet? Check out our roundup of the best cheap internet plans for rural areas.

Starlink vs. Xfinity: Equipment

Both providers give you a wireless gateway so you can set up a home Wi-Fi network, but they also charge you extra for it. Starlink charges a large, one-time fee of either $599 or $2,500 for the router and satellite dish, while Xfinity charges a more reasonable $14 per month for the router. The gear is good enough to handle the speeds of each provider.

Something nice about Starlink is that you actually get to keep the equipment after you purchase it, whereas Xfinity requires you to turn it back in if you cancel service. This means you can resell the gear and potentially recoup some of the investment.

Installation of equipment is another story. Depending on where you live, Xfinity is typically self-installed if your home or apartment is already hooked in. If not, then Xfinity charges $99 for professional installation. Starlink is entirely self-install since it's designed to work right out of the box. So you'll need to bring out your handyman hat if you want a permanent installation.


Say what you will about Xfinity's customer service, good or bad, but at least there are plenty of avenues to reach support when you need it. Starlink's customer support is almost non-existent, with the only option for help being a support ticket system on their website. Customers we've spoken to say the response is often slow. 

Starlink vs. Xfinity: Availability

Starlink definitely wins in availability, as you’d expect from satellite internet. The provider is available nearly nationwide, including rural areas where you’d otherwise have few or no internet options. There have been some issues with waitlists in the past, however, so if you need satellite internet with none of the fuss, you may want to consider an alternative like Hughesnet or Viasat.

Xfinity's availability is also quite good, especially for a cable provider. While most of its presence is in the eastern half of the country, there are several hotspots in Colorado, Washington, Utah, California, New Mexico, and Texas. To check availability in your area, use our handy zip tool below.

Xfinity TV

Although we’re mostly focused on internet here, it’s worth noting that Comcast also offers a TV service called Xfinity TV. It’s a solid service in its own right, but the real advantage is being able to bundle it with internet, which often saves a little money compared to getting the two services separately.

While we’re big fans of streaming here, we have to admit that prices are rising, and it’s entirely possible that a cable subscription might actually be cheaper than streaming now, depending on how many services you have.

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Looking for an alternative to cable TV? Read our complete guide.

The Verdict: Should you choose Starlink or Xfinity?

Generally speaking, we always recommend cable or fiber when available. Xfinity is no exception: it’s a great service, with fast speeds at affordable prices. The big caveat is availability. Rural customers may have a hard time getting Xfinity, and you can’t take it on the road with you.

In these cases, Starlink is definitely worth a look. It offers excellent performance for a satellite provider, and the unlimited data is a big bonus. Starlink Mobile fills a unique niche that most other providers don’t, as well.

Enter your zip code below to see if Comcast or Starlink are available in your area.

Starlink vs. Xfinity FAQ

Is Starlink as good as cable internet?

That really depends on what cable internet you have available. Starlink can compete with some lower-end cable packages, at least in terms of download speeds. However, Starlink will have higher latency than cable, and top-tier cable plans will almost certainly be much faster. Starlink is also more expensive than most cable packages.

Is Starlink as fast as Xfinity?

No, Starlink is not as fast as Comcast Xfinity. Xfinity offers speeds up to 1,200Mbps in most regions, whereas Starlink maxes out at around 220Mbps. Starlink might be as fast as some low-end Xfinity plans, but you’ll also likely pay a lot more for it.

What’s the downside of Starlink?

Starlink is a great service with a lot of positives, including fast speeds (for satellite), nationwide availability, and unlimited data. However, it’s not perfect. It’s very expensive, the equipment fees are high (as much as $2,500!), and customer service is nearly non-existent. Overall, Starlink isn’t a bad service, but we’d caution you to do some research before jumping in.

Andreas Rivera
Written by
Andreas Rivera
Andreas Rivera is a lifelong writer with a decade-spanning career in journalism and marketing. He comes to with several years of experience writing about business and technology. His passion for researching the latest advancements in tech, especially the now essential need for reliable internet access, fuels his goal of educating others about how these innovations affect and improve our everyday lives. When not researching and writing about, you’ll likely find him buried in a good book or enjoying the great outdoors with a fishing rod.