Internet TV Explained and the Advantages

The term ‘Internet TV’ refers to a television service that is available online. Much like conventional television, it allows viewers to select what they want to watch from a directory of channels. Many major Internet TV web sites are available on an on-demand basis. Unlike conventional Digital or Satellite TV, on-demand Internet TV viewers aren’t limited to only what is currently being broadcast. They can choose from the most recently aired shows or take a trip into the past with a visit to the site’s archives.

Most Internet TV sites of today use a streaming service, which allows the viewer to watch the program as it is transferred bit by bit to their computer. This streaming process usually requires broadband internet access. There are various rates of picture quality available that are best suited to different internet speeds. Television programs with standard definition usually require a bandwidth rate from five hundred to 1,500 kilobytes per second. Television programs with a higher definition and resolution can require a bandwidth rate of up to 3,500 kilobytes per second. There are also low bitrate streaming services that adapt the quality of their videos to the available bandwidth.

Some of the most popular sites to watch TV online are Google TV, Hulu, Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Sky Player, and Internet Free TV. Hulu, available only in the United States, features the latest and greatest episodes of some of television’s most beloved shows such as Dexter, Family Guy, and even 30 Rock. Hulu is a good site for watching new content as it generally releases the new episodes of all the shows it features within 24 hours of them being shown on television. Hulu doesn’t usually allow viewers to watch older episodes, however.

Netflix is a great place to watch the older episodes of your favourite shows. Although it does feature new episodes, and is the only place to catch shows such as Californication, Deadliest Catch, and CSI, Netflix specializes in the archiving of previous episodes.

If your computer has an HDMI port, you can even connect it straight to your television set and watch the same programs without all the extra price and hassle of contracting cable television. There is even a PC remote that works with Windows Media Centre and a Mac remote that works with iTunes. You can use these remotes to control content from major Internet TV providers such as Hulu and Netflix while you sit back on your couch and relax.

Although many Internet TV sites work just by visiting the web site, some require the download of an application to your computer. Applications such as PlayOn and Boxee allow you to manage content much easier and even download it to your hard drive for later viewing. Application-based Internet TV takes a slightly longer time to use due to registration and download requirements.

This article was written by Spencer Hogg who writes for the website Broadband Expert where great satellite TV deals can be found.

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