The way people absorb information and search for entertainment has changed radically over the last decade or so.
Over time the internet has become a critical part of life in general for most people.
One area that the internet has changed beyond recognition, is home entertainment. Specifically, television.
Streaming goliaths Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime have hundreds of millions of subscribers. Without the internet, this form of entertainment would be impossible.
These are just a few illustrations of IPTV platforms. There are many more options available, and according to digital TV research, IPTV will overtake cable’s subscriber numbers by 2026.
What is IPTV?
The initials stand for internet-protocol television. It refers to live, and on-demand, television shows, and movies being viewed over the internet.
Anyone using an IPTV service can view TV channels of their choice without the need for a cable subscription.
The biggest example of an IPTV is Netflix. This platform has somewhere around 222 million subscribers today. This type of IPTV is described as VOD or video-on-demand. Other IPTV providers may show live TV such as sports.
Streaming platforms have shown the popularity of the online entertainment industry among millennials. And there are now dozens of IPTV providers available.
Is IPTV legal?
Clearly, Netflix and Hulu are completely legal services. However, not all IPTV platforms can claim the same.
To be legal, the IPTV service has to own the rights to the content that they provide. Some IPTV providers flout copyright laws, and these should be avoided.
A number of licensees in the UK have been prosecuted for using illegal IPTV services to show live sports, such as soccer.
A quality IPTV service will provide thousands of channels with video on demand, and live sports too. Some platforms are free, and others have a monthly subscription.
Why should you use an IPTV service?
Traditionally, television shows have been provided in analog form. Today, many people prefer their entertainment to be provided digitally.
Using IPTV means receiving shows and movies in digital form. This translates to a clearer, crisper picture.
Receiving TV this way also allows greater flexibility. Digital channels can be watched on a variety of devices, including smartphones.
There are several more reasons to use IPTV, but there are some downsides too.
The advantages of using IPTV
By using IPTV, you will receive the following benefits.
- Interactive TV
- HD TV and movies
- Live and on-demand TV
- Parental controls
- Record multiple channels
- Further entertainment
Interactive TV and more control
TV guides and some shows can provide interaction. One example of this is Bandersnatch from Black Mirror.
IPTV providers can give control to parents over what their youngsters can view.
These types of services also provide extra convenience. Channels can automatically switch over to a show that has been marked on the TV guide.
Further entertainment in the future
There is also the promise that IPTV could provide other entertainment in the future, such as gaming. Netflix has already announced its plans to provide games to members.
What are the disadvantages of using IPTV?
Not everything about IPTV is rosy, however. The downsides to using IPTV are as follows.
- Fast internet access is needed
- You need a decoder
- You may be vulnerable to spyware and other unwanted programs
- You may be violating the law
You need good internet access
New York State launched a Broadband For All program in 2015. This has resulted in 99% of New Yorkers having access to broadband according to some sources.
To use IPTV effectively, a strong internet speed of between 10Mbps to 25Mbps is required. A decoder is also needed to convert the code received into something watchable.
IPTVs may not be safe
Two other issues with IPTV providers circulate around safety.
If you use an illegal IPTV service, you will also be effectively breaking the law. No one has been prosecuted for watching an IPTV in their home, but technically it is a possibility.
In the UK, there are laws in place against illegal IPTV services, and these include those that view them.
There may be concerns with spyware and other viruses. Accessing websites for illegal IPTV may result in you unwittingly installing spyware or other PUPs.
A home entertainment system is essential for many people today. To make your main living area a relaxed and comfortable space you may want to have HD, and surround sound.
IPTV is likely to be an important part of the future when it comes to entertainment. The giants such as HBO Max and Disney are not going away. Now, many other services are offering even more content than the biggest streamers do.
To enjoy IPTV safely, find a reputable provider. Make sure you have the fastest IP you can find in your area. And use a VPN for extra protection and privacy.