Video Streaming More About This Process and What It’s Used For
Video has become one of the most popular ways to share content. Most people are attracted by visuals and if they can watch a video, instead of reading an article, they will. As such, including video in content is a great way for creators to interact with their audience. There are even individuals that make a full-time income just by creating video content and live streaming. In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at what video streaming is and how it works. We’ll also discuss tools that make video streaming more efficient, such as using a YouTube proxy. Check this for more information on these helpful tools.
What Is Video Streaming?
Video streaming is a process of continuous transmission of video and audio files over the internet. Simply put, video streaming is when users make use of the internet to watch videos or listen to podcasts on internet-connected devices such as laptops, smartphones, and smart TVs.
The first websites we used were very text heavy, and you had to read the articles to get any valuable information. As technology improved, websites started adding images, and soon downloadable content to add even more value for their readers. Now, video content and, more specifically, video streaming, has become one of the most popular ways to share content.
Think about some of the most popular social media platforms, YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, and Instagram. All of them feature video content to varying degrees. While Facebook also includes text and Instagram has a focus on still images, they still feature video content as well. Platforms like Twitch that are dedicated to live streaming are also becoming more popular.
Social media also isn’t the only platform where we use live video streaming. Streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+ all rely on this technology as well. Video conferencing and remote meeting software like Skype, Zoom, and Google Meet also rely on this technology to enable individuals from around the world to meet over the internet.
What Is the Difference between Streaming and Downloading?
The biggest difference is in how the content is enjoyed. When you stream a video, you are watching it in real time. By streaming a video, the server of your chosen platform loads a little of the file at a time while you watch it. This file isn’t stored on your device, so it doesn’t take up any space. However, it does require a stable internet connection and fast bandwidth. When downloading a video, the file is broken up into small pieces that are sent to your device. You need to have all these pieces before you can start to watch the video, and it’s stored directly on your device.
How Does Video Streaming Work?
Video streaming works in a very similar fashion to sending any other information on the internet. The video and audio files are broken into smaller pieces known as data packets. Your chosen player takes these packets and interprets them as audio and video files when playing.
There are two main video streaming protocols used today: User Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and Datagram Protocol (UDP). The type of protocol used depends on the streaming platform. Some use TCP, whereas others prefer UDP.
TCP creates a dedicated connection and ensures all the data packets arrive in order. Therefore, TCP is more reliable as none of the packets get lost along the way. Alternatively, UDP does neither of these, which makes it much faster than TCP.
As such, TCP is often used in situations where you need all the data pieces to enjoy the service. This is the case in many streaming platforms, such as Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, and others.
However, when speed is more important, such as when you’re having a video conference or meeting, DCP is the better option. In these cases, attendees would prefer to be able to interact with other members in real time rather than waiting for the entire data packet to be delivered.
What Slows Down Streaming?
There are a few factors that can slow down a video stream. In these cases, you may be hit with the dreaded buffering icon. All streamed videos require buffering, as this is part of the process that allows the platform to start receiving the video and audio files. Let’s take a look at what causes delays in streaming.
From the network:
- Network latency
- Network congestion
From the user:
- Wi-Fi issues
- Slow performing devices
- Inadequate bandwidth
What Can Improve Video Streaming?
Video streaming is subject to the same kind of delays as other types of internet content. However, since these files tend to be very large, these delays can be more apparent and therefore frustrating. Have you ever been in the middle of streaming an episode of your favorite show only for the buffer icon to halt your stream? There are few things as wanting to relax by streaming your favorite show or watching your favorite YouTuber live, only to be halted mid-way.
One way that you can improve your video streams is by using a YouTube proxy. When you connect through a YouTube proxy, not only can you access content that may be restricted. But you’ll also have the benefit of a more stable and faster internet connection. This is because all communications go through the proxy server, which is much more equipped to handle data transfers than your device on its own.
Video streaming is one of the most popular ways to enjoy the content. However, your video streams can be affected by internet connection speeds, bandwidth, and more. To overcome these issues and enjoy streaming videos, a YouTube proxy can be the ideal tool to start using.