Streaming content is an audio or video file on the Internet that's played without being fully downloaded. More specifically, live streaming is the method of constantly sending and receiving content over the Internet. Streaming content or streaming media are beneficial in that they significantly reduce, if not eliminate, wait times for online content, depending on the Internet connection speed. Online radio stations, YouTube videos, and Netflix are examples of streaming content. In August 2022, Nielsen reported that streaming had surpassed TV viewing for the first time.
Although streamed content isn't permanently saved to the device, parts of the file are briefly stored (cached) to allow it to play smoothly.
The first live streaming was done by the band Severe Tire Damage on June 24, 1993. The event was seen live in Australia and other locations over the Internet. While streaming audio is not quite as bandwidth-intensive, streaming video does require more bandwidth to achieve. Users wanting to view streaming movies should have an Internet speed of at least 2.5 Megabits (Mbit) per second. For high definition content, 10 Mbit/sec is recommended.
What are the top streaming platforms?
Today, there are many different streaming platforms, below are the most popular.
Advantages of streaming content
Below is a list of all the advantages of streaming any content over the Internet.
- Get to start watching or listening to the content almost immediately.
- Don't have to store much information on your computer or device and run out of storage.
- You can watch streaming content on many devices.
- Once the digital distribution platform runs on the computer or device, no additional software or codec is required.
Disadvantages of streaming content
Although there are many advantages to streaming content, there are still the following disadvantages.
- Always need an Internet connection.
- Need an Internet connection that stays fast enough to stream without noticeable buffering.
- Requires a monthly fee to access the streaming content.
- Purchased content stays with the account and cannot be transferred elsewhere.