First off, it is always better to have a look back at the definition of video streaming, because we use it daily, but sometimes, the mechanics behind services like Netflix or Youtube are a bit blur for some of use.

So what is Video Streaming ?

It is the process in which the data from a video that is present on a distant server is continuously delivered via the Internet to a user. Remote users can thus view onlive videos whitout downloading the video on his device.

 

How does it work ?

Video streaming works as follows: data of the video file is compressed and then divided in small parts to be later sent to the streaming device. If you want to stream video, you will typically need a compatible video player that can connect to the server. Tools like the VLC media player can be used as a server or as a client to stream and receive video streams. VLC is completely free and can read almost all files.  It is an open source cross-platform multimedia player, so you can also use it for free to watch your favorite series on DVD or your favorite songs on audio CDs.

The audio stream is compressed to make the file smaller using an audio coding format such as MP3 or AAC. The video stream can be compressed as weel to make the video file smaller.  These format include H.264 for example. Complete videos can have their audio and video streams decompressed and encoded in well-known formats like the famous MP4 and FLV.

The compressed data is then decompressed by the receiving device that later plays the streamed date, which the user can watch in real time, without the need to fully download the file before viewing it.

 

Connection speed needed to stream videos

A broadband speed of 2 Mbit/s is the minimum speed you will need for streaming standard definition video without delays or time lags. 5 Mbit/s is recommended for HDcontent and 9 Mbit/s for Ultra-High Definition content. Services Like Netflix advise to have the following speeds to use their service:

  • 0,5 MB/s : minimum internet speed
  • 1,5 MB/s : recommended internet speed
  • 3 MB/s : recommended speed for streaming standard definition videos (480p, 720p)
  • 5 MB/s : recommended speed for streaming HD videos (1080p – Full HD videos)
  • 25 MB/s : recommended speed for streaming ultra HD videos (4K videos)

 

 Video streaming apps and additional services 

Services like Snaptube can be used to stream videos form Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Soundclound and even Vine.co  in a smart and speedy way. This app will also help you convert videos in MP3 format to only allow you to only play the audio content of the video. If you want to discover this service and give it a try, please follow this link to download Snaptube