Internet Protocol televisionÂ (IPTV) is a system through whichÂ televisionÂ services are delivered using theÂ Internet protocol suiteÂ over aÂ packet-switched networkÂ such as aÂ LANÂ or theÂ Internet, instead of being delivered through traditionalterrestrial,Â satelliteÂ signal, andÂ cableÂ television formats. Unlike downloaded media, IPTV offers the ability to stream the media in smaller batches, directly from the source. As a result, a client media player can begin playing the data (such as a movie) before the entire file has been transmitted. This is known asÂ streaming media.
IPTV services may be classified into three main groups:
- Live television, with or without interactivity related to the current TV show;
- Time-shiftedÂ television: catch-up TV (replays a TV show that was broadcast hours or days ago), start-over TV (replays the current TV show from its beginning);
- Video on demandÂ (VOD): browse a catalog of videos, not related to TV programming.
IPTV is distinguished fromÂ Internet televisionÂ by its ongoing standardization process (e.g.,Â European Telecommunications Standards Institute) and preferential deployment scenarios in subscriber-based telecommunications networks with high-speed access channels into end-user premises viaÂ set-top boxesÂ or otherÂ customer-premises equipment.