In general terms, streamed data is video, audio, graphics, slide shows, webinars, or any other information/data that is sent from a server to a host, in which the data represents information that is delivered in real time.
Streamed data is continuous, so there is no file to download and save. Streaming functions like a broadcast, in that the relayed information can be live or stored. This “broadcast” can be delivered from any location or device with an IP address to anyone, anywhere. A user’s media player can begin playing the data, such as a movie or a song, before the entire file has been transmitted.
Streaming data has become necessary since most Internet users do not have the space on their computers or devices to store multiple, large multimedia files. With streaming, the user’s browser starts showing the data immediately. Here’s how: the user’s device receives and collects the data, then sends it to the program or application that processes and converts the data to video or audio. If the user receives the data in real time, the presentation of the data will be smooth. If the user receives the data too quickly, the excess data is saved in a buffer, still allowing the presentation of the data to be relayed smoothly. However, if the user receives the data too slowly, the appearance of the data will look spasmodic.
There are three ways to stream information:live streaming, on-demand streaming, and near-demand streaming. Live streaming normally requires a fast connection to the internet, a camera for the media, an encoder to digitize the data, a media publisher, and a content delivery network. On-demand streaming is typically archived live streams that are available 24/7.Near – demand streaming refers to content that is provided within time constraints, such as weekly, daily, hourly, etc. For many content providers, streaming has become the preferred method of delivering Internet content. Streaming limits the average user’s ability to save, distribute and profit from the desired content without the proper authorization.