Streaming Media

Learn more about streaming media and its applications in this video. 

Streaming Media is the process of delivering multimedia data (such as video or audio) from a streaming service provider to an end-user. Streaming Media delivers audio and video elements using basic HTTP, TCP/IP, and HTML protocols.

Video or audio content is streamed (i.e. transmitted) over the Internet in compressed form. It is then played back immediately, rather than being saved to the hard drive for playback at a later time. This eliminates the need to wait for a file to be completely downloaded before viewing or listening.

Unless content is being streamed live, users are able to pause, rewind, or fast-forward, just as they would with a downloaded file. Furthermore, since data order is unimportant, Streaming Media is sent and received according to network availability.

Streaming Media grew immensely in popularity in the late 1990s. This coincided with innovations that increased network speed and bandwidth, which are absolutely essential to the Streaming Media functionality we take for granted today.