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HOW DOES STREAMING WORK?

29 May 2022
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How does streaming work? In media broadcasts, sounds and images are encoded on air and then decoded by radio or television receivers. Internet streaming works differently. There is no single open channel between the source and the destination. Instead, the source bundles the data into small packets and sends them over the Internet. This is similar to what happens when you send an email or post something on a website. These individual packets can travel from the source to your device at different speeds. Each one is labeled so that your device can place them in the correct order.

Once your device has enough consecutive packets and is ready to play them, the streaming of content begins. This process is known as buffering. If your Internet connection is not fast enough to receive packets in time when you need them, the content may not play properly. (See “Streaming Problems” below).

Note that buffering is different from progressive download. This term refers to some downloads that allow you to start playing the content before the file is completely saved. You will still need to save the entire file to your device, and you may encounter similar problems if the data is not downloaded as quickly as it is used for playback.

Live Streaming

Live streaming allows you to access events as they happen. Professional sports are some of the most popular live streaming sporting events, but this category also includes radio broadcasts and live video from social media channels such as Facebook.

For example, Super Bowl LII had a peak of 3.1 million viewers streaming, with an average online audience of 2 million. The U.S. soccer game is one of the most streamed sporting events, but its audience is small compared to the traditional audience: an additional 100 million viewers tuned in.



How to watch TV online

There are many options for watching TV online, from subscription services to online streaming services.



How does live video streaming work?

The way live streaming works is very simple: you need to tune in to a source that is broadcasting the event. You can often find live streams of political news, music concerts and interactive events on social media. You can even find sources that provide live broadcasts from local and global radio and television stations.

Streaming video

The most popular streaming content is video. Whether it’s short video clips or feature films, the best way to watch them is through a streaming service. YouTube is the most popular source of videos; people watch about 5 billion videos on YouTube every day. And 300 hours of new content are uploaded to the site every minute.

Geo-blocking refers to systems that control access to content based on location. This specific control is motivated by copyright and other reasons. For example, some services provide rights to show a certain movie to American audiences, but not in Europe (or vice versa).

In some cases, you can bypass geo-blocking by using a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN provides you with a more secure Internet connection and has the added benefit of making it look like you’re connected from a different location than you were originally. For example, if you subscribe to a video streaming service in the United States, you may not be able to access it when you travel to other countries. You can use Avast Secureline VPN to access the content you paid for, even outside the US.

The advantages of streaming

Internet streaming has revolutionized the way we consume media. Whether it’s checking out the latest news, listening to our favorite music artists, or taking a break from puppy videos, we can connect anytime, anywhere from our PCs, tablets, or smartphones.

You can start watching or listening almost instantly, without having to wait for a large file to download. And since you’re not saving files on your system, there’s much less chance of running out of space or downloading malicious code to your device.

Plus, streaming allows you to watch live events as they happen, without having to wait for the data to be recorded to be available.

From the decline of cable to the demise of the audio CD, streaming has changed the way we interact with all types of media.


Learn more about streaming movies and series:

 


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