can i use ethernet instead of coax xfinity

can i use ethernet instead of coax xfinity

Can I Use Ethernet Instead of Coax for Xfinity?


Many Xfinity customers wonder whether they can use an Ethernet connection instead of a coaxial cable for their Xfinity service. In this article, we will explore the feasibility of using Ethernet and provide a detailed explanation for better understanding.

I. Understanding Coaxial Cable:

1. Definition and Functionality:
– Coaxial cable is a type of electrical cable with an inner conductor surrounded by a tubular insulating layer.
– It is commonly used for transmitting television signals, internet data, and other communications signals.

2. Coaxial Cable’s Role in Xfinity Service:
– Xfinity utilizes coaxial cable as the primary medium for delivering television and internet services to customers.
– The coaxial cable connects the Xfinity gateway or modem to the cable wall outlet, allowing the signal to be transmitted and received.

II. Using Ethernet Instead of Coax for Xfinity:

1. Feasibility:
– In most cases, using Ethernet directly for Xfinity service is not possible.
– Xfinity relies on a hybrid fiber-coaxial (HFC) network infrastructure, which requires coaxial cable connections.
– Ethernet cables are typically used for local area networks (LANs) and are not compatible with the HFC network setup.

2. Exceptions and Alternatives:
a) Advanced Xfinity Gateway Systems:
– Some advanced Xfinity gateway systems may offer an Ethernet input for specific purposes, such as connecting to a separate router or access point.
– However, the primary connection from the Xfinity network to the gateway will still require a coaxial cable.

b) Xfinity xFi Pods:
– Xfinity xFi Pods are Wi-Fi extenders designed to improve Wi-Fi coverage within a home.
– While they utilize the electrical outlets, they do not replace the coaxial cable connection.

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c) Ethernet for Other Devices:
– While Ethernet may not be suitable for Xfinity service, it can still be used for other devices connected to the Xfinity network, such as computers, gaming consoles, or streaming devices.

III. Optimal Use of Coaxial Cable and Ethernet:

1. Coaxial Cable Advantages:
– Coaxial cable inherently supports a broader frequency range, making it suitable for television and high-speed internet delivery.
– It offers better signal quality and reliability over longer distances compared to Ethernet.

2. Ethernet Advantages:
– Ethernet provides faster speeds and lower latency for devices directly connected to the network.
– It is typically used for high-bandwidth applications, such as gaming or media streaming.

3. Utilizing Both:
– To make the most of Xfinity services, it is recommended to use the coaxial cable connection for the primary Xfinity gateway or modem.
– Ethernet can be used for devices requiring fast and stable connections, such as gaming consoles or smart TVs, by connecting them to the gateway or router with an Ethernet cable.


While many customers may wonder if they can use Ethernet instead of coax for Xfinity, it is generally not feasible due to the HFC network infrastructure. Coaxial cable remains the primary medium for Xfinity services, providing reliable connectivity for television and internet. However, Ethernet can still be utilized for connecting other devices within the Xfinity network, leveraging its speed and stability benefits. By understanding the optimal use of both coaxial cable and Ethernet, customers can make informed decisions when setting up their Xfinity services.

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