TV Over the Internet – What is it?
Television, sometimes called TV or T.V., is a modern telecommunication medium employed for transmitting moving visual images over the air, either in black and white, or in color and three dimensions. This broadcasting medium has been extensively used by various organizations and individuals for entertainment, information dissemination, and communication purposes. The emergence of television changed the way communication and entertainment were distributed and received. In this paper we will try to understand how this medium functions and what are its advantages over other modes of mass communication.
The evolution of television brought about unprecedented changes in our lifestyle. It ushered in an age where people were able to see their favorite personalities almost anywhere they go. At that time, people didn’t need to travel in order to watch their favorite stars, entertainers or documentaries. Sitting in front of the TV was a symbol of freedom and elation.
Communication via television is categorized into two forms: direct and indirect. In the direct method, the signal is transmitted directly from a transmitter to an end-user; while the indirect method involves transmission of the signal by means of wires or cables from the transmitter to an end-user in the form of a cable or wiring. A very important invention of television is the wide-screen television. Widescreen TVs has enabled the audience members of different viewing areas to view the same program or show at the same time.
Broadcasting involves the transmission of signals using radio waves. Radio waves are used as the means of sending information from a source to an end-user. TV broadcasts are sent through electromagnetic radiation waves. These waves are produced by the television set, which converts the analog signals into electronic ones. Thus, the transmitted signals are in the form of digital signals, which can be decoded and reassembled in the form of images.
In the past, television signals were transmitted by a top-down technique, whereby a network of television stations were interconnected through antenna links. With the development of digital technology, an additional layer of transmission facilities was required in order to support a wider number of stations. Digital television services were thus introduced, through which signals can now be transmitted via IP networks. This layer of transmission allows television stations to send their digital signals directly to end-users; and to receive digital signals from any IP-based device.
There are now TV channels spread over a large number of television stations; and more are being launched every day. The emergence of online television stations on the other hand has posed a great challenge to traditional TV operators. With the advent of the internet, watching TV on-line has become possible for numerous people across the world. This has prompted the emergence of numerous IPTV services that deliver TV programs to our personal computers.