Mediacom 1GIG / DOCSIS 3.1 Internet Implementation

In Iowa, Mediacom is rolling out a 1gig internet service across all areas where their internet is available. Of course my living in Iowa, I am going to get this service and have a few questions about it's implementation.

Seeing as there is very little online regarding the actual details of their service, I am restricted to the information that I received from their customer support. That information being the following:

"It takes advantage of DOCSIS 3.1"
"It does not come with a modem capable of Wi-Fi"
"We do not guarantee Wi-Fi will work with this service"
"Our modem provides internet over Ethernet only, if you would like to have Wi-Fi you can try to find a router that's compatible with our service, but again there's no guarantee it will work"

Basically my main questions are:
What is DOCSIS 3.1?
Are there compatible routers I can get to be able to have Wi-Fi?
And finally, does anyone here work, or know anyone who works for Mediacom that can clarify what this service actually is going to provide?

I would just schedule an appointment with a technician to install this service and then ask them, but Mediacom told me that it's a $50 installation fee even if I decide after the technician gets there that I don't want the service. I'm trying to avoid having to pay to be told that their service won't work for me.

Thanks to all who reply, anything helps. I'd love to have gigabit internet but if it's unrealistic I'd rather know now before spending any money.

Basically their setup is just to go from their provided Modem out to a "router" that will do your firewall, DHCP, and Wifi. You can grab any consumer router and hook it to their modem via ethernet to get wifi and wired services. You'd go:

Coaxial into house -> their Docsis 3.1 modem -> "router" -> wired and wireless internet

So would any router capable of those speeds work? Also they say that you "have to use their modem", do you know if this is true, or just something they use as a money grab?

I was just reading that one of our local providers is looking to complete rollout of infrastructure supporting docsis 3.1 this year. Hopefully that turns into 1 gig Down something much better than it currently is Up but I just as easily see them withholding the service and making it boutique pricing or business only.

Medicoms 1gig is availible everywhere in Iowa and I guess they have plans to roll this out to every state they operate in. It's pretty expensive here right, $140 plus the $10 "modem rental". I wouldn't be looking at it if the price wasn't being split between four people.

Yes in theory. There are some low-end Asus units that have been popular lately, but what people don't know is that the speeds listed on the page and box aren't actually even remotely plausible because the switch on the back of the router is 100Mbps instead of gigabit, even though the router is Wireless AC capable and lists 1200Mbps speeds or something like that.

According to what I've found only, currently it seems for their 1Gbps service they don't have any Docsis 3.1 modems certified yet. They do have Docsis 3.0 modems certified, but those are older and will not support gigabit speeds. Eventually I see it likely that they will add support for other modems besides the one they're supplying, but not as of yet.

So I would need to find a router with a gigabit capable switch?

Also could I use a docsis 3.1 modem even if it's not certified? As in is there anything on mediacoms end that will tell them it's not a certified modem and they won't allow it to be used?

Thanks for the replies.

Yes, basically just a mid to high end router.

According to what I've found online, not at this time. It looks like they're only doing gigabit service if its their modem and their technician sets it up. Gigabit coaxial is fairly new, so its an annoying cash grab but one that I don't think can be circumvented as of the moment.

Damn that sucks but oh well. So I guess my next question would be the modem they have listed as the only one they support is the Technicolor TC4400, which only has 2 LAN ports. My only experience with routers is using a phone jack to provide the signal, so would any router I use get signal through an Ethernet connection to the modem?

Yes so the coaxial copper line comes in and connects to the Technicolor modem. The modem will then connect via ethernet to one and only one device on the back; the device being your router. The modem has two ethernet ports for services that have 2 ip addresses provided to the modem by the ISP, but for home internet you'll only get 1 and hence only one port will work at a time.

Just curious, what specifically should I look for in a wireless router to make sure it's actually capable of gigabit speeds?

Well, make sure its got gigabit ports first. This is the page of the AC1200 from Asus, an advertised gigabit router:

As you can see under ports, all the ethernet ports are 10/100BaseT, which caps this modem realistically at 100Mbps of throughput. It should be 10/100/1000BaseT for gigabit.

Make sure the brand is good. Your going to want to be looking at higher end routers in companies product stacks if you want to find consumer stuff that can get the most out of a gigabit pipe. High end Asus, Netgear, Linksys, or TP-Link are good brands in the space. You'll want an AC wireless router. Older standards like wireless N are going to further limit your throughput.

I was actually looking at midco in North Dakota and where we are its like 75$ (goes up to 90$ after 2 years) for 1gig down and like 50 up.

Only routers with Wireless AC 5Ghz with MIMO will be able to take advantage of gigabit speeds over wifi.

The Linksys 1900ACS or the 3200ACM for example both have gigabit ports, and the AC radios have 1.2GB and 2.4GB over the 5GHZ AC radios respectively.

N wireless can do up to 600Mbits and routers like the Linksys 1200AC can do 867Mbit over the 5GHZ radio.

That being said. If your laptop or other wireless device can't do MIMO 5GHZ AC you are stuck with lower than Gigabit speeds.

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