Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) is the delivery of television content over an Internet Protocol (IP) network. This is in contrast to distribution through traditional terrestrial, satellite and cable television formats. Unlike downloaded media, IPTV offers the ability to stream source media continuously. As a result, a client media player can start playing content (such as a TV channel) almost immediately. This is known as streaming media.
Although IPTV uses Internet Protocol it is not limited to television streaming over the Internet (Internet Television). IPTV is widely deployed in subscriber-based telecommunications networks with high-speed access channels to end-user premises via set-top boxes or other subscriber-premises equipment. IPTV is also used for media distribution around corporate and private networks. IPTV is notable for its ongoing standardization process in the telecommunications field (eg, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute).
IPTV services can be classified into live television and live media, with or without associated interactivity; time shifting of media, eg, catch-up TV (replays a TV show that aired hours or days earlier), start-over TV (replays the current TV show from the beginning); and video on demand (VOD) which involves browsing and viewing items in a media catalog.
Historically, many different definitions of IPTV have emerged, including the primary stream over an IP network[clarification needed], the MPEG transport stream over an IP network, and several proprietary systems. An official definition endorsed by the International Telecommunication Union Focus Group on IPTV (ITU-T FG IPTV) is:
IPTV is defined as multimedia services such as television/video/audio/text/graphics/data delivered over IP based networks managed to provide required level of service and experience, security, interactivity and reliability.
Another definition of IPTV, related to the telecommunications industry, is given by the Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions (ATIS) IPTV Exploratory Group in 2005:
IPTV is defined as the secure and reliable delivery of entertainment video and related services to consumers. These services may include, for example, live TV, video on demand (VOD) and interactive TV (iTV). These services are delivered over an access agnostic, packet switched network that employs IP protocols to transport audio, video and control signals. Unlike video over the public Internet, with IPTV deployments, network security and performance are strictly managed to ensure a superior entertainment experience, creating a compelling business environment for content providers, advertisers and consumers alike.
In the early 1990s, it was not considered possible that a television program could be squeezed into the limited telecommunications bandwidth of copper telephone cable to provide acceptable quality video-on-demand (VOD) television services as the bandwidth required. A digital television signal was about 200 Mbps, which is 2,000 times the bandwidth of a speech signal over a copper telephone wire. VOD services were only made possible by two major technological developments: speed-compensated DCT video compression and asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) data transmission. Motion-compensated DCT algorithms for video coding standards include the H.26x format since 1988 and MPEG formats since 1991. Motion-compensated DCT video compression has significantly reduced the amount of bandwidth required for a television signal, while ADSL Increased the bandwidth of data that could be sent over a copper telephone wire. ADSL increases the bandwidth of a telephone line from about 100 kbps to 2 Mbps, while DCT compression reduces the bandwidth required by a digital television signal from about 200 Mbps to about 2 Mbps. The combination of DCT and ADSL technology made it possible to practically implement VOD services in the 1990s at a bandwidth of about 2 Mbps.
The term IPTV first appeared in 1995 with the founding of Precept Software by Judith Estrin and Bill Carrico. Procept has developed an Internet video product called IP/TV. IP/TV was an Embone-compatible Windows and Unix-based application that transmitted single and multi-source audio and video traffic, from low to DVD quality, using both unicast and IP multicast real-time transport protocols (RTP) and real-time control. . protocol (RTCP). The software was originally written by Steve Casner, Carl Auerbach and Cha Chi Kuan. Precept was acquired by Cisco Systems in 1998. Cisco retains the IP/TV trademark.
The telecommunications company USWest (later QWest) launched an IPTV service called TeleChoice in Phoenix, Arizona in 1998 using VDSL technology, becoming the first company in the United States to provide digital television over telephone lines. The service was discontinued in 2008. .
The Internet radio company Audionet began its first continuous live webcast with content from WFAA-TV in January 1998 and KCTU-LP on January 10, 1998.
Kingston Communications, a UK regional telecommunications operator, launched Kingston Interactive Television (KIT), an IPTV over Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) service in September 1999. The operator added additional VOD services in October 2001 with Yes TV, a VOD content provider. . Kingston was one of the first companies in the world to introduce IPTV and IP VoD over ADSL as a commercial service. The service has become the reference for various changes in UK government regulations and IPTV policy. In 2006, the KIT service was discontinued, dropping from 10,000 to 4,000 subscribers.
In 1999, NBTel (now known as Bell Alliant) first commercially deployed Internet Protocol television over DSL in Canada using the Alcatel 7350 DSLAM and middleware developed by iMagic TV (owned by NBTel’s parent company Bruncor ). The service was marketed under the VibeVision brand in New Brunswick and later expanded to Nova Scotia in the early 2000s following the formation of Alliant. iMagic TV was later sold to Alcatel.
In 2002, Sasktel was the second in Canada to commercially deploy IPTV over DSL using the Lucent Stinger DSL platform.
In 2005, SureWest Communications was the first North American company to offer high-definition television (HDTV) channels through IPTV service.
In 2005, Bredbandsbolaget launched its IPTV service as the first service provider in Sweden. As of January 2009, they are no longer the largest provider; TeliaSonera, who launched their service later, now has more subscribers.
In 2007, TPG became the first internet service provider in Australia to launch IPTV.
In 2008, Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) launched IPTV in Pakistan under the PTCL Smart TV brand. This service offers 140 live channels in 150 major cities of the country.
In 2010, CenturyLink – after acquiring Embarq (2009) and Qwest (2010) – entered five US markets with an IPTV service called Prism. This was after successful test marketing in Florida. Later in 2010, Bell Canada (a major division, if not the largest division of BCE) announced that it would offer residential and business/commercial customers in Montreal, Quebec and Toronto, Ontario IPTV via a variety of methods, including Fiber-Two. -home, fiber-to-the-node and DSL. This flavor of IPTV will be packaged with other services and branded as “Bell Fib”, which provides Canadian