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Comcast Offering Free Wi-Fi in California
As Long As You're an Existing Comcast Customer
by Karl Bode 08:35AM Friday Sep 28 2012
Comcast today announced that the company is now offering free Wi-Fi to existing paying customers in California. According to a Comcast press statement, the company is now offering Wi-Fi to users in Northern and Central California plus Santa Barbara County, including: the San Francisco Bay Area, Sacramento, Fresno, Monterey, Santa Maria and Chico (we've included the full list below).

The announcement comes on the heels of the news that Comcast would be expanding free Wi-Fi to 2,500 more hotspots on the East Coast. Comcast originally piggybacked on Cablevision's idea (and some of their infrastructure) in offering Wi-Fi to combat FiOS, with installs along major commuter zones around New York City. Comcast customers can sign in wherever they see the "Xfinity WiFi" SSID.
quote:
Xfinity WiFi will provide fast wireless Internet access via hotspots in cities throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, as well as Aptos, Atwater, Buellton, Cameron Park, Carmel, Chico, Chowchilla, Colusa, Corcoran, Davis, Diamond Springs, Dinuba, El Dorado Hills, Elk Grove, Fairfield, Folsom, Fresno, Galt, Grass Valley, Hanford, Kerman, Lathrop, Lemoore, Lodi, Lompoc, Los Banos, Madera, Manteca, Marysville, Mendota, Merced, Modesto, Monterey, Murphys, Nevada City, Newman, Oakdale, Oroville, Parlier, Patterson, Placerville, Rancho Cordova, Reedley, Roseville, Sacramento, Salinas, San Andreas, Sanger, Santa Maria, Selma, Solvang, Sonora, Soquel, Stockton, Tracy, Tulare, Twain Harte, Vacaville, Vallejo, Visalia, Willows and Yuba City.
A full coverage map is available here.

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IowaCowboy
Iowa native
Premium
join:2010-10-16
Springfield, MA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Verizon Broadban..
·Comcast

I don't use public hotspots

When I use my laptop on the go, I use my Verizon 4G Jetpack. Too many security issues with public wi-fi hotspots.

My iPad has a built in 4G LTE radio built in and its on my VZW share everything plan (in addition to my Jetpack, iPhone, and two dumb phones).

--
I wish I still lived in Iowa; Everything there from rent and groceries to Cable TV is much cheaper in Iowa (especially with an overbuilder in town).

RR Conductor
NWP RR Inc.,serving NW CA
Premium
join:2002-04-02
Redwood Valley, CA
kudos:1

Re: I don't use public hotspots

....................

RR Conductor
NWP RR Inc.,serving NW CA
Premium
join:2002-04-02
Redwood Valley, CA
kudos:1

1 edit
Well, unless you have the grandfathered and now unavailable unlimited plan, you are going to run into their nice caps. Also, not all areas have LTE yet, up here in rural Mendocino County in Northwestern California we still don't have it, though Verizon, AT&T and U.S. Cellular all plan to roll it out here.

Edit-We do have HSPA+ w/EB from AT&T, and I can get up to 10 Mbps down and 1.1 Mbps up on that, but again, unless you have unlimited you run into the carrier's teeny caps.

PapaMidnight

join:2009-01-13
Baltimore, MD

Re: I don't use public hotspots

said by RR Conductor:

Well, unless you have the grandfathered and now unavailable unlimited plan, you are going to run into their nice caps.

Considering he has stated that he has the share everything plan, I would wager that ship has long sailed.

RR Conductor
NWP RR Inc.,serving NW CA
Premium
join:2002-04-02
Redwood Valley, CA
kudos:1

Re: I don't use public hotspots

said by PapaMidnight:

said by RR Conductor:

Well, unless you have the grandfathered and now unavailable unlimited plan, you are going to run into their nice caps.

Considering he has stated that he has the share everything plan, I would wager that ship has long sailed.

True, I meant you though in general.

RR Conductor
NWP RR Inc.,serving NW CA
Premium
join:2002-04-02
Redwood Valley, CA
kudos:1

2 edits

Comcast HSI in Mendocino County, no Comcast WiFi yet though.

We have Comcast HSI up here in Redwood Valley (Mendocino County, Northwestern California), but the closest Comcast WiFi point to me is in Healdsburg, 55 miles south. I hope they expand soon, though I get free WiFi with my AT&T Wireless plan as well, and many places, like hospitals, hotels, trains, etc. have free WiFi now too, even in rural areas like mine.

As far as security (mentioned by Iowa Cowboy), well, there can be an issue here, but just make sure and have a good firewall and anti virus package, and ONLY use sites that are secure, if you don't feel secure with those, well, just wait until you can get a secure access point to do transactions and other sensitive things.

XANAVirus
Premium
join:2012-03-03
Lavalette, WV
Reviews:
·Callcentric
·Comcast

Re: Comcast HSI in Mendocino County, no Comcast WiFi yet though.

I do use public WiFi (free wifi) but only if I can use my VPN with it.

Since it's an SSL VPN I have yet to see somewhere where it doesn't work. Luckily my university doesn't mind one bit even though I'm a student and I can't really think of a reason why students have access to the VPN in the first place (our email is perfectly available without it if you forward it out of there to somewhere else first).
hottboiinnc
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: Comcast HSI in Mendocino County, no Comcast WiFi yet though.

many Universities give VPN access into the schools. It's how they keep their data safe when you're trying to access something that's secure. Such as Software Centers (places you can download programs that the university purchased for everyone) without being at school.
hottboiinnc
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Missing information in "story".

Karl- you forget to mention that even if you're not a customer, you can still use the service by paying, which you should anway.

MooJohn

join:2005-12-18
Milledgeville, GA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Windstream

Ripe for phishing

Now all someone has to do is set up a rogue wireless point with that SSID and start collecting (presumably) valid Comcast logins & passwords. That won't get anyone free internet access since it's a cable company but I bet it'll get access to those email accounts.

Set up a welcome page that requires another bit of account info and you've got a treasure trove of stolen data without having to breach any security systems.
--
John M - Cranky network guy

flibby3655
Bully Spotter
Premium
join:2004-12-19
Lompoc, CA

Not Working Here

Drove by all seven hot spots here in Lompoc with my iphone. Not one was broadcasting a signal.
--
"Safe in the permanent gaze of a cold glass eye"

madmatt5

join:2002-04-06
Sacramento, CA

Re: Not Working Here

I drove by a couple of the outdoor locations in Sacramento and also found no signal.
scheb
Premium
join:2007-04-14
Folsom, CA

Hotspots in CA

I checked the hotspots in my area and they're in places like a lawyers office, fitness trainer, realtor, etc. Not really anywhere convenient (open after 5, etc.)... It leads me to believe that these are merely Comcast business customers with special hardware.

flibby3655
Bully Spotter
Premium
join:2004-12-19
Lompoc, CA

Re: Hotspots in CA

said by scheb:

I checked the hotspots in my area and they're in places like a lawyers office, fitness trainer, realtor, etc. Not really anywhere convenient (open after 5, etc.)... It leads me to believe that these are merely Comcast business customers with special hardware.

Locations are the same here... Did you get a signal from the locations?
--
"Safe in the permanent gaze of a cold glass eye"
scheb
Premium
join:2007-04-14
Folsom, CA

Re: Hotspots in CA

I managed to stop by the realtor yesterday and didn't pick up the xfinitywifi ssid. Today I stopped by the lawyer and my phone picked up the ssid and gave me the login page. I entered my credentials but the page timed out during authentication. So it's not vaporware out here, but still is in inconvenient locations.

Business names on the hotspot finder (instead of addresses only) and xfinity wifi hotspot signage at the locations would go a long way towards making this a usable product.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY

ugh..

stop using the word "FREE" if you have to be a subscriber..
the correct term is VALUE-ADDED, or complimentary (as in addition to... something you BUY)

free implies no purchase necessary in most cases.
Madtown
Premium
join:2008-04-26
Madera, CA

What are the actual speed?

What are the actual speed? I would think that this being CC, it would be at least 12mbps download.

THZNDUP
Deorum Offensa Diis Curae
Premium
join:2003-09-18
Lard
kudos:2

Does the useage go against your caps?

Free WiFi? I wonder how that will work out after nationwide caps are put into place.
Barovelli

join:2002-04-03

Tested working in 93933

Taco Bell Parking lot, LOL.

AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1

not Free, Included

Is this is like what they have in the NYC metro area?
--
--Standard disclaimers apply.--