what is iptv

what is iptv : IPTV (Internet Protocol television) is a modern way to watch TV. It uses the Internet to deliver shows and videos. This is different from usual TV, cable, or satellites. With IPTV, you can watch live shows or choose from a library of movies and shows whenever you want.

Most IPTV content is sent over special networks. This makes the viewing experience smooth and clear. Technologies like IP multicasting help in this process. IPTV also uses protocols such as Real-Time Messaging Protocol and Hypertext Transfer Protocol.1 IPTV’s main competitor is internet TV. This kind of TV offers programs through the Internet, using a broadband connection.

what is iptv

Key Takeaways

  • IPTV delivers television programming using the TCP/IP protocol suite
  • IPTV content is typically delivered over managed or dedicated networks
  • IPTV utilizes IP multicasting and other protocols for live broadcasts
  • IPTV competes with internet TV, which distributes content through websites
  • IPTV offers services like video-on-demand, interactive TV, and time shifting

Definition of IPTV

IPTV stands for Internet Protocol Television. It uses the TCP/IP suite to bring TV shows and videos to your screen. This is different from how you get TV through broadcasts, cables, or satellites.1 Big companies like Verizon and streaming services like Netflix use IPTV. Even smaller companies focus on special content delivered online.

IPTV Defined by the International Telecommunication Union

The ITU describes IPTV as a way to share multimedia over IP networks. It ensures good quality, security, and is interactive and reliable.1

IPTV Defined by the Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions

The ATIS IPTV Exploratory Group in 2005 had its own definition. They said IPTV is about giving subscribers entertainment video services securely and reliably. These include Live TV, Video On Demand (VOD), and Interactive TV (iTV). All this is done over an IP network, making it flexible and efficient.1

History of IPTV

In the early 1990s, new tech led to VOD TV via phone lines. This tech includes motion-compensated DCT and ADSL. The term “IPTV” came about in 1995 when Precept Software created IP/TV for internet video.2

Early Developments in Video Compression and Data Transmission

Breakthroughs in the early 1990s let us send video over phone lines. This made VOD services possible. It all started with the ability to compress video well and send it fast.2

Precept Software and the First IPTV Product

In 1995, Precept Software introduced IP/TV, using IPTV. This early model showed how TV could reach people through the web.2

Early Commercial IPTV Services

1998 saw the launch of IPTV by US West in Phoenix, Arizona. It was the first of its kind in the US. A year later in Canada, NBTel and Bell Aliant offered it, with Sasktel following in 2002.2

1998US West (later Qwest) launched the first IPTV servicePhoenix, Arizona, USA
1999NBTel (now Bell Aliant) was the first to commercially deploy IPTV over DSLCanada
2002Sasktel was the second in Canada to deploy IPTV over DSLCanada
2005SureWest Communications was the first North American company to offer HDTV channels over an IPTV serviceNorth America
2007TPG became the first internet service provider in Australia to launch IPTVAustralia
2008PTCL launched IPTV under the brand name of PTCL Smart TVPakistan

How IPTV Works

IPTV works over a dedicated network. This lets operators control video traffic well. They can ensure high quality and steady service.3 Unlike regular TV, IPTV doesn’t send all shows at once. Instead, it sends what the user picks.3

Delivery Over Managed Networks

IPTV mainly uses IP multicasting for live TV with IGMP. RTSP is used for on-demand shows.1 You’ll also see RTMP and HTTP used often.1

Unicast vs. Multicast Transmission

IPTV needs managed networks for multicast. This makes the service better than cable or satellite TV.4 It’s also nicer to watch compared to OTT services thanks to fewer lost packets.4

Common IPTV Protocols

For live TV, IPTV uses IP multicasting with IGMP. RTSP is common for on-demand shows in IPTV.1 On IPv6 networks, Multicast Listener Discovery helps with IPTV.1

IPTV Use Cases

IPTV has many uses, such as live TV and media3. This includes watching shows as they air. It also lets you watch programs at a later time, like when you start a TV show over from the beginning, or through video on demand (VOD). Video on demand allows you to choose from a catalog of items or watch shows that aired before.5 With IP technology, providers can offer more services. These include things like video on demand, interactive TV, live streaming, messaging during shows, and the ability to watch things later.

Live TV and Live Media

1 IPTV is ideal for watching live TV and media. It meets the needs of viewers wanting to see content as it is broadcast.

Time-Shifted Media and Catch-Up TV

5 With IPTV, you can time shift media. For example, you can start a TV show from the beginning5. Or, you can use video on demand (VOD) to catch up on a show you missed or look through a media catalog.

Video on Demand

5 IPTV also provides video on demand services. This means viewers can watch shows whenever they like, just like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.

IPTV Providers

The IPTV world has a wide range of providers, from big names to smaller firms. You’ll find Verizon’s FiOS alongside Netflix, Google, and others. This mix brings many shows and movies to fans, with channels like Roku, Hulu, and YouTube joining in.1

Major IPTV Providers

In the IPTV field, there’s something for everyone. From Apollo Group TV to Vudu, many companies offer special shows and movies. Thanks to fast internet, watching what you love is easier than ever.1

Smaller and Niche IPTV Providers

Large IPTV companies lead, but others keep growing. These smaller providers meet different tastes with unusual shows and events. This means more choices for people looking for something new.1

what is iptv

IPTV stands for Internet Protocol television. It offers tv shows and videos through the internet. This is different from cable, satellite, or over-the-air TV.1 With IPTV, you can watch live shows or choose from a library of videos. These come to you over an internet connection that’s often set up just for you. This means you get better quality and fewer interruptions.

1 IPTV uses a special way to send data called packet delivery. This lets your TV service run smoothly even when you’re using the internet for other things. It’s great because it can also work with phone service and super-fast internet.1 For live shows, IPTV uses a feature called IP multicasting. And for picking videos when you want, it uses another feature called Real-Time Streaming Protocol.

1 Big names in IPTV include Verizon, Netflix, and YouTube. Even smaller companies like Bing TV and Sportz TV offer these services.1 These services are up against internet TV models. These offer TV through special websites using fast internet connections.

5 By 2029, experts think the IPTV market will grow a lot.5 People like Hybrid IPTV because it mixes regular TV with new internet TV. This way, you get more shows in one place.

5 IPTV comes in three main types. There’s Video on Demand, or VOD, like Netflix and Amazon Prime. Catch-up TV lets you watch what you missed on BBC iPlayer. And live IPTV includes watching sports online.5 Sports fans really use IPTV to watch their favorite games. Now, places are popping up that let anyone make their own TV shows and share them around the world.5 Counting how many people use IPTV is hard because there’s so much choice.

2 In 2009, the IPTV market made $12 billion. By 2013, it was supposed to be $38 billion big.2 In 2009, 28 million people had IPTV. By 2013, that number was expected to be 83 million. Most of these viewers were in Europe and Asia.

IPTV Market and Growth

The global IPTV market size reached USD 68.78 billion in 20236. It’s expected to hit USD 276.38 billion by 2032, growing at a rate of 16.8% yearly.6 The rising use of smartphones, smart TVs, and fast internet has boosted the demand for OTT platforms.6 The need for online entertainment grew during lockdowns too6. This increased the usage of streaming services, including IPTV platforms. People love services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+6. These SVOD services are driving the IPTV market.

Now, many are swapping regular TV for web services like IPTV. They do this for the variety of shows, ease of use, and flexibility IPTV offers.6

Residential IPTV Market

In 2023, hardware needed for IPTV, such as set-top boxes and routers, led the market. But, the software part is set for high growth6. Smart TVs were the most popular, followed by devices like smartphones and laptops, for watching IPTV6. In terms of use, the media & entertainment sector topped the market. This is because IPTV customizes shows and offers interactive features, making it attractive.6

Europe and Asia have the most IPTV users. But, Europe and North America make more money from it, mainly due to higher prices. China and India are quickly growing their IPTV markets, despite lower prices there.6 By 2029, the IPTV market might double in value. This is thanks to both new and familiar providers offering more IPTV content.6

what is iptv

IPTV Formats

IPTV has three main types: Video on Demand (VOD), time-shifted and catch-up TV, and live shows.3

Video on Demand (VOD)

VOD is like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime. You can watch shows and movies whenever you like.3

Time-Shifted Media and Catch-Up TV

BBC iPlayer lets you catch up on TV shows you missed. But, the shows are only available for a short time.3


With live IPTV, you can watch live TV on the internet. Examples include FOX Sports Go and Hulu Live TV.3

IPTV Requirements and Devices

To watch IPTVshows>, you often need a special box. Examples are Apple TV, Roku, or Amazon Fire TV. They help older TVs get IPTV if they can’t on their own.3 Newer smart TVsdevices> can connect to IPTV directly. They come with IP support built in.3

Set-Top Boxes and Smart TVs

Those with old-style TVs need a set-top boxset-top boxes> for IPTV services. These boxes link the internet signals to your TV. They use HDMI or AV cables to hook up.3 Yet, Smart TVs can link straight to IPTV services. This means you don’t have to buy a separate box.3

Hybrid IPTV Approach

Some TV companies mix things up with a hybrid IPTV approachiptv>. It offers both regular TV and IPTVshows> using one box. This blend helps create and launch new features easily without changing a lot of the hardware.3

what is iptv


IPTV is changing how we watch TV. Services like Netflix and Hulu are popular. They let us watch shows when we want to.

Others, like catch-up TV and live shows, are not as common yet. But, interest in watching live sports online is growing. With WWE’s big show moving to Netflix, live broadcasts could get more popular soon.

New platforms also let people make their own TV and live-show services. This shows IPTV will keep getting better and more popular.7

As technology gets better and more people want IPTV, it will become huge. IPTV can reach many people, show different things, and is growing fast. It’s set to change TV for good.8


What is IPTV?

IPTV stands for Internet Protocol television. It’s a way to watch TV programming and videos using the internet. This is different from standard broadcast, cable, or satellite TV. With IPTV, you can watch live TV or choose videos to watch when you want. This happens over specific networks that are not the public internet. These networks are managed for better service quality and reliability.

Whether IPTV is legal or not depends on where the content comes from. Legal IPTV is offered by companies with the right licenses. But, watching IPTV from illegal sources means you might be watching shows and movies without permission. This is against the law.

What is an IPTV service?

An IPTV service is a way to watch TV and videos over the internet. Instead of traditional ways like cable or satellite, you use an IP network. These services can have all sorts of shows, from live TV to ones you can watch later. They’re offered by many different kinds of companies.

What is IPTV Smarters Pro?

IPTV Smarters Pro is a favorite app for watching IPTV. It lets you use your IPTV subscriptions on different devices, like smart TVs and phones. The app lets you do things like see live TV, choose videos to watch later, and keep your channels and lists organized.

Can I get a free trial of IPTV?

Yes, some IPTV services let you try them for free at first. This is a chance to see if you like the service before you have to pay. But, be careful with completely free IPTV services. They might not be legal and could have content that’s not allowed to be shared.

  1. https://www.techtarget.com/searchnetworking/definition/IPTV-Internet-Protocol-television
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Protocol_television
  3. https://www.muvi.com/blogs/what-is-iptv-how-iptv-works/
  4. https://blog.servermania.com/what-is-iptv
  5. https://www.uscreen.tv/blog/what-is-iptv/
  6. https://www.fortunebusinessinsights.com/internet-protocol-television-iptv-market-106645
  7. https://www.bsgroup.eu/blog/iptv-in-a-nutshell/
  8. https://www.redswitches.com/blog/what-is-iptv/