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What is Internet TV?

Internet TV makes television shows available online or by downloading.
Streaming and download sites associated with Internet TV allow users to pause, rewind, or fast forward media content.
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  • Written By: G. Melanson
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 12 October 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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Internet TV most often refers to television shows that are available to watch on the Internet via downloading or streaming video. In broader terms, it may also refer to movies, viral videos, clips, and other video content available on the Internet.

Although YouTube™ is the Internet’s most popular video site, it is not widely considered to be the best site for watching TV. Major television networks enforce copyright laws that prohibit users from uploading many of their TV shows onto the service, minimizing the selection of popular programs available. Most networks now feature their television programs on TV sections of the show’s official website or the network site; however, these are often only viewable to Internet users located within the United States. Like other streaming video sites, YouTube™ sometimes also buffers its data when users are watching on a slow connection.

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Unlike streaming video, downloadable video allows users to keep the video content on their computers, and this is a popular method of watching Internet TV. Torrent services have become a major way of facilitating TV episode downloads, by allowing users to share and transfer video content in file form. Major television networks have sought legal action against torrent services for distributing their content, however. Meanwhile, some networks and Hollywood studios have worked around these obstacles by signing deals with the services. In 2008, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) became North America’s first public broadcaster to make a full program (Canada's Next Great Prime Minister) available for download via torrent.

The major benefits of Internet TV include programming selection and flexibility. Unlike regular television, Internet users can select virtually any program and episode they choose to watch at any given time, including shows that have long been canceled. Watchers also don’t need to record programs with a digital video recorder (DVR) in order to pause, rewind or fast forward through certain sections — both streaming and download sites allow users these capabilities.

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Discuss this Article

ronburg44
Post 6

People often complain that you cannot find actual television series shows live in full broadcast times as they would regularly be seen in regular television on the Internet. I would have to completely disagree. While the major networks may have not come to this point yet where they actually broadcast on the Internet at the same time as a broadcast on television networks, I think we will see that convergence soon.

Until then there are already things that you can view as a live stream on the Internet that are absolutely wonderful. While they may not be the pop-culture mainstream television shows that you like to watch from the comfort of your living room, they are often highly specified and specific interest video streams such as live events from manufacturers about the announcements of new products as well as local council meetings that you can view live from your living room.

NightChef
Post 5

Soon I think we will see a convergence in our electronic consumer market in the form of Internet and TV. While right now you can watch television shows on the Internet through your laptop or desktop computer, I think what we will see is a computer-based television that will actually sit inside your living room. While some people do now offer home media solutions that have computers that will hook up to your television, I don't think that the revolution has truly started yet.

Only when these units are sold as a complete enclosed package do I think that they will really take off. Several manufacturers have attempted this before but the quality of technology simply was not up to par with what the public demanded. It must be a high definition device capable of browsing the Internet just as a computer would. Once you combine these two forms of media delivery there will be a killer combination unlike ever seen before.

sammyG
Post 4

The only problem with Internet television is that it still does not offer the absolute variety of content that cable and satellite television services offer. While the selection is growing day by day, there still is no comparison to the variety that you can get if you turn on your TV to a standard way of delivering content.

Why do think that someday Internet TV will catch up to these other types of services it has not happened yet. With the advent of new technology and new delivery systems I believe that it will happen soon but until then I am sticking to my satellite TV and enjoying all of the Sunday football games that I get over its older technology. It may be old technology but I'm enjoying it more than the newer technology.

FootballKing
Post 3

Internet TV is the only way that I watch TV nowadays. With the cost of cable television services going out the rough and the specials they offer seemingly to be scams, I can only turn to one source to find my television experience.

The best part about Internet television is the fact that I can watch my shows when I want to without the extreme cost of a digital video recorder. Will my friends use satellite and cable television services often have to purchase extra expensive equipment, I simply open up my laptop and enjoy my entertainment.

The cool part two, is that I'm able to hook up my computer to my television if I actually want to watch it just as I would a normal television program. The reality is I often find myself not even going to that much trouble and enjoying the television show right front of me on my notebook computer.

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