IPTV is an abbreviation for Internet Protocol Television. In basic terms, that means watching television over the Internet. It is an increasingly popular alternative to more traditional forms of receiving television such as over the air, satellite and cable. In this article, I will be looking at how we can watch television over the Internet and what kind of services are available. IPTV has become something that many of us use everyday, but do you acutally know what it is? In this post we’ll go through IPTV in a bit more detail. Chances are that you have heard about IPTV before, but never really understood what it means. In fact, you have probably been using IPTV for years without even knowing it. There has been a fundamental shift in how we consume television. Before the advent of the internet, TV was strictly scheduled. Today, the landscape is vastly different. TV can now be consumed on-demand in various different formats. In many ways, IPTV is the grandfather to all the new ways we consume television today, such as over-the-top (OTT) television. Best IPTV was invented in the early 1990’s, whereas OTT came to maturity about 15 years later, in the mid-2000’s. That isn’t to say that IPTV is outdated, not at all, but rather that is has evolved over time and is gaining market share even today. But let’s rewind a little bit and dig into what IPTV really means.
How can I access IPTV?
There are three main ways to watch television over the Internet. IPTV apps let you have access to a voluminous content library through the means of an internet connection that connects you to an IPTV Services provider’s network. After that, users can look into the channels and content that is readily available and choose what they wish to watch.
1. Smart Television
The vast majority of televisions released in the last five years will be smart television. A smart tv will likely come with applications such as Netflix. Even if your television isn’t smart or is smart but doesn’t offer the application or service you want to use, you can connect your television with a streaming device which I will be discussing next.
2. Streaming devices
A streaming device is a device that you can plug into a television and access streaming services that allow you to watch television over the Internet. Companies such as Google, Roku and Amazon make and sell streaming devices. I have written a review of the Amazon Fire Television cube.
3. A computer or mobile device
Lastly, we have computers or mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. These devices can stream television over the Internet using many different streaming applications. You can find out more in our article on watching television on a Windows computer.
What can I watch on IPTV?
IPTV services can be divided into three different categories, broadcast television, which is television that is broadcast with a set schedule like your standard television channels. Catch-up television services allow you to catch up with television programmes that have recently been broadcast. Last but not least, we have on-demand television programming and films that are available to watch when you want to watch them. The following list gives an indication of some of the IPTV streaming services available.
- Netflix. A film and television streaming service. You can read our Netflix review
- Amazon Prime Video. A film, television, and live sports streaming service. Free to Amazon Prime subscribers.
- Disney +. A film and television streaming service. Home to Disney, Star Wars and Marvel content.
- BBC Iplayer. The catch-up and tv streaming series from the BBC. Requires a TV licence to view.
- ITV Hub. ITV catch-up service.
- All 4. Channel 4 catch-up service.
- My5. Channel 5 catch-up service.
- Now TV. A streaming service that allows non-Sky customers to access Sky programming, including sports and films. You can read my Now TV review.
- Brit Box. A streaming service providing classic British programming,
- BT Sport. A streaming service for BT Sport programming.
- Sky Go. A streaming service for Sky customers. Due to trees impacting my satellite feed, I had to use this service at times as a sky customer.
- Plex. Allows you to stream broadcast and on-demand television. We have published a number of articles on Plex which can be accessed via our Plex homepage
Today we learnt that IPTV means watching television via the Internet. I then looked at the various ways you could stream television over the Internet and finally listed some available services. Best IPTV app is an application made for letting users access and stream IPTV content on their smart gadgets like TVs or mobiles. Numerous operating systems, including Android, iOS, and Windows, support these applications.