Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

Q: What’s the name of your company?

A: The name is FIVEBYFIVE, Inc. The product is xFaire, a smart entertainment platform.

Q: Why are you named FIVEBYFIVE? What does it mean?

A: The name “FIVEBYFIVE” comes from broadcast communications, where “five by five” is the best out of 25 possible responses to describe the quality of communication: clearest broadcast and strongest signal, or, Loud & Clear.™ The name also echoes the Wu-Xing, the Chinese Five Elements—each element generates another, creating an endless cycle of perfect harmony.

Q: Where does “Loud & Clear™” come from?

A: In broadcast communications, the quality of the broadcast is described on a scale of 1 to 5 for signal readability and 1 to 5 for signal strength, with the best possible broadcast being “5 by 5” (best readability and best strength). In the 1950s, people started using the phrase “loud and clear” as another way to describe the 5x5 signal quality.

Q: How do you pronounce xFaire?

A: It's “ecks-fair,” or /ˈɛks fɛɚ/.

Q: What exactly is the xFaire?

A: There are two parts to the xFaire: the hardware and the service. The service is an Internet-based subscription service that lets you watch live broadcast TV and unlimited on-demand past TV. It also has some other cool features, like viewing “rooms” for you and your friends, so you can watch the same shows at the same time even when you're far away from each other. The hardware is two separate pieces: the device that plugs in to your screen of choice (TV, monitor, projector, etc), and the Smart Remote that you use to control everything.

Technology & Support

Q: What’s the Smart Remote?

A: The Smart Remote for the xFaire is a simple remote control designed to be as user-friendly as possible. Instead of using outdated (and complicated) buttons, it uses a streamlined touchscreen menu, so you control the xFaire as smoothly as possible. It comes with an accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity sensor, microphone, rechargeable battery with wireless charging, WiFi, Bluetooth, NFC, and more. In the future, we plan to also let you use your smartphone to control the xFaire.

Q: If I have two or more xFaires installed at home, will the smart remotes interfere with each other?

A: You can have as many xFaires as you want, and the smart remotes will work just fine.

Q: Can I use the xFaire to stream from my computer, smartphone, or tablet?

A: At the moment, you can use xFaire to stream from your smartphone or tablet, but not your computer. Supported devices are the Apple iPhone and iPad, Andriod phone and tablet, and Windows Phone. Extended support for major smartphones, tablets, and possibly laptop computers is in the works.

Q: What’s the storage capacity of the xFaire? Does it have a DVR function? How many tuners does it have?

A: The xFaire has a 64GB local capacity for buffering. Instead of a local DVR function, it saves every show from every channel forever, without you having to program it, using unlimited tuners and Cloud-based storage.

Q: Does xFaire use external power?

A: Unlike most streaming devices, xFaire comes with a built-in auto-switching power supply unit. All you need to do is plug in the supplied power cable to the power socket outlet.

Q: How fast does my Internet connection have to be?

A: You only need a connection of 2.5 Mbps for HD (high-definition) content, and 15 Mbps for UHD (ultra high-definition) content. In comparison, our competitors strongly encourage you have a connection speed of 5+ Mbps for HD content, and over 25 Mbps for UHD—that's twice as much as xFaire needs!

Q: Does xFaire need a wireless network?

A: xFaire needs some type of Internet connection in order to use the subscription service. We recommend that you use WiFi to keep your setup uncluttered, but the device has Gigabit Ethernet ports if you prefer a wired connection.

Q: Does xFaire support 5GHz WiFi? 4K?

A: Yes, it does. xFaire was designed from the ground up to support 4K Live TV using the latest codec.

Q: Does it support OTA (Over-The-Air) antenna?

A: No, it doesn’t. However, xFaire was designed to support 4K/UHD TV, which requires a lot of bandwidth. The current FCC regulations limit OTA broadcasts at 19.39 Mbps, whereas a 4K Blu-Ray-quality broadcast would require at least 50 Mbps. Even the next generation of broadcast standards is only expected to be at 25.2 Mbps, which means all 4K UHD content will be delivered solely through the Internet for the forseeable future. Since that's where the quality broadcasts are, that's where we'll be!

Service & Billing

Q: What do you mean by Beyond DVR™?

A: Beyond DVR™ refers to the way xFaire records shows. Instead of traditional DVRs, which force you to manually schedule recordings and have limited storage space, xFaire automatically records every show from every channel and saves them to the Cloud. You can bookmark and sort your favorite shows for ease of navigation, and you'll never have to remember to schedule another recording again!

Q: How many channels does xFaire offer?

A: The catalogue is always expanding! We’re constantly working with all major networks, movie studios, and overseas networks. Depending on your subscription, you can have access to basic channels, sports-specific channels, movie channels, international networks, and more.

Q: How many people can watch xFaire at a time?

A: That depends on your membership plan. Our basic membership plan allows two separate screens to show content per account per household. For other subscription plans, the number of screens can increase.

Q: Do you offer any trial programs?

A: Yes, we have a one-month free subscription for all new users! As soon as you install your xFaire system and set up your profile, you can watch unlimited TV and on-demand content through the Internet.

Once your trial membership period is up, you can choose to continue into a full subscription. Plans are month-to-month, so you're never locked in to a long-term contract and there are no early cancellation fees.

Q: How does billing work?

A: Billing is automatic, once every month on the date that you initially signed up. So, if you started your xFaire subscription on July 19th, you would then be billed on August 19th, September 19th, etc.

Q: If I don’t have a subscription plan, can I use my xFaire for anything else?

A: Of course! Even without a subscription, you can use your xFaire to browse the Internet and display your smartphone or tablet screens on your TV. On top of that, you can even use your xFaire as a wireless access point.

Q: Will the xFaire work outside of the US?

A: Currently, TV service is only available in the USA. However, we are working to expand the service abroad. Our mission is to make xFaire service available globally.

Even without a subscription in the US, you can still use your xFaire to browse the Internet, mirror your smartphone or tablet screens onto your TV, or act as a wireless access point.