What’s Wrong With Your Comcast App On Roku


Q. I just signed up for Comcast’s TV service and the customer service guy said I could start watching my channels before the installer came, using the Xfinity app on my Roku. But I keep getting an error message when I try to watch one of the channels on the app. Can you help me? — Burke, Boston.

Burke, as you note, Comcast has an app on Roku called Xfinity Stream that allows you to watch the same channels that you subscribe to via your set-top. For example, if have the set-top connected to a living room TV, you could watch your Comcast programming lineup on another TV by simply connecting the Roku to the second set.

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This a nice feature for Comcast subscribers who want TV in multiple rooms without paying for additional set-tops. The Xfinity app does not require an additional fee. (Note: The Xfinity Stream app is also available on smart phones and tablets.)

However, Xfinity Stream requires two things to work to watch live channels:

1. Internet service from Comcast;

2. One Comcast TV set-top installed and connected in the house.
You didn’t mention if you subscribe to an Xfinity Internet plan, but it’s needed to send the signals from the set-top to your Roku box, using your home wireless network.

On point #2, it sounds like the Comcast customer service representative got a bit ahead of himself. You can’t start watching live channels on the Xfinity app as soon as you sign up for TV service. You actually have to have the service (and set-top) installed. After that, you should have no trouble accessing your subscription channels on Roku.

Last point: The Xfinity app is available on the following Roku devices:

Ultra (4660), Ultra (4640), Premiere + 4630, Premiere (4620), Express + (3710 and 3910), Express (3700, 3900), Roku TV (5XXX, 6XXX: Models within the 5000 and 6000 range), Streaming Stick + (3810), Streaming Stick (3600 and 3800), Roku 4 (4400), Roku 3 (4200, 4230), and Roku 2 (4210).

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Have a question about new TV technologies? Send it to The TV Answer Man at swann@tvpredictions.com. Please include your first name and hometown in your message.

— Phillip Swann

9 comments on “What’s Wrong With Your Comcast App On Roku”

  1. Phillip, good article, I have had xfinity stream for over a year. At first there were some glit.ches, however no problems in the last 8 months. In my area in Mississippi we don’t have to have any set top boxes. The only requirement is to have Xfinity internet. The service allows you to stream unlimited from their app with no data cap on their app. Streaming from other apps tops out at one TB per month. I really enjoy your commentary and have followed you for over eight or so years.

      1. It doesn’t send signals from a set top box to the stream app through your wireless network lol where did you hear that? The whole point of the app is to eliminate a set top box. I’ve never had a set top box and it works fine on roku and Samsung smart TV app .

  2. I have had the Xfinity streaming app since last year. I do not have Comcast’s TV service, I have my own modem and router and I have Comcast’s internet service. I have read Comcast’s notice concerning the requirement for Xfinity TV service, but the streaming service is working properly on three Roku devices in our home.

  3. The Ultra 4660 is no longer sold – the 4661 has replaced it. It seems to be identical hardware and the only difference is that they throw some headphones in the box. I was worried that it wouldn’t work because Comcast’s FAQs say that you won’t be able to download the app on unsupported Roku units. But the 4661 worked fine. I did run into 1 problem – I’m in the middle of moving and I had 2 accounts linked to my email address. One address had TV service and one has only internet. The authorization link that you have to use to grant the Roku access does not understand multiple Comcast accounts. I had to have my accounts split into separate usernames.

  4. Xfinity beta streaming is so damn unstable. It buffers constantly. When it works its great but when it screws up it buffers every few minutes. I checked my connection and all is working. I stream everything and dont have any problems. Even Pluto the free site works better than Xfinity. Once my year is up I am done with Comcast and Xfinity. It SUCKS!

  5. I have three Roku devices.. One is six years old. I use Comcast Xfinity streaming on all three devices and have zero problems. This is well into my second year. I often have two tablets, a smartphone and two TV sets on at the same time. I live in a rural ate of Mississippi and just have a coax feed. A while back we did an experiment and used a signal booster in an out building 100 feet away and watched and streamed tv and Xfinity without a flaw, all over air, no cables used. It worked successfully for weeks.

  6. I’m not getting 5.1/surround sound through the app…wondering if that’s just me or is that a limitation of the app? Picture quality and streaming works just fine.

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