Who isn’t aware of the buzzword “streaming services”? Anyone? I do not think there is a single person, young or old who has not used or heard the word Netflix. And if there is any, it is big deal and he/she seriously needs to keep up with the world. Anyhow, streaming platforms are becoming increasingly popular. Although Netflix has lost subscribers because of certain policies, the benefits of other streaming alternatives should not be erased by the mistakes of one service.
It is important that there is a service that offers access to media such as music, live sports, movies, or television shows. It must be noted, however, that streaming platforms are not always as good as they seem. Though they would not cost you much if your provider allows you to bundle services like Spectrum deals where you can save money by bundling phone, cable and internet, it is not without its disadvantages just like anything in this world.
Sounds worrying? Well, do not bed because that does not mean you cancel all your subscriptions and sit home with a shut TV or laptop.
The purpose of this article is to provide you with a more complete understanding of streaming platforms by covering the pros and cons so that you can choose one that has more benefits in your favor.
Let us start with what exactly are streaming services and a little flashback on the history.
What is a Streaming Service?
By definition, it refers to the transfer of video and audio files consistently through either wireless or wired connection. Yes, internet connection. So, in other words, streaming includes all the media content, both recorded and live, that we watch on our laptops, TV, and phones through the internet, and that too in real-time. Some common forms of streaming content consist of movies, web series, podcasts, documentaries, and music videos. Can you think of more? Great!
A Brief History of Streaming Services
It all started in 1995 when ESPN SportsZone used pioneering technology created by Progressive Networks , a Seattle-based startup company, to stream a live radio broadcast of a baseball game between the New York Yankees and Seattle Mariners. The event was the first to be streamed live in the world and was viewed by thousands of people worldwide.
While streaming media had always intrigued technology enthusiasts and CEOs, the early days of the new technology market were marred by pragmatic problems like how to successfully stream watchable video over 56k modems. The company would rename itself RealNetworks and find itself locking itself into a bitter technological and legal war with Microsoft.
Due to its Windows Media technologies, Microsoft emerged as the winner of the RealNetworks war, but it failed to capitalise on it. Windows Media’s market share was slowly and surely eroded by Macromedia in early 2000s in favour of Flash Player, which was later acquired by Adobe Systems. Streaming media was revolutionized by Flash, which seamlessly merged Web 2.0 and streaming media.
And now, let us discuss the advantages and disadvantages in detail so that you can make up your mind to either go for it or stick to cable.
Pros and Cons of Opting for Streaming Services
The advantages first.
Pros of Streaming Services
Accessibility and Ease
There are many things that make streaming platforms convenient, including not having to deal with ads.
Movies and TV shows don’t need to be downloaded or stored on your device. Streaming platforms are a great alternative to hoarding large media files when it comes to free up drive space on your computer.
To customize your viewing experience, you can choose from a variety of options. In case you run out of things to watch, you can check the recommendations tab for suggested viewing based on your past viewings.
It is the absence of ads that stands out as the most significant advantage. The traditional television experience would require you to sit through commercials and waste your time. It’s true that streaming sites offer a different experience, and the absence of advertisements is one of the main reasons they are so popular.
Content can be selected and watched immediately. It is easy to switch between episodes. Versatile Content
Another advantage is variety. TV shows, movies, and documentaries are readily available to us as consumers. To draw in more customers, streaming services are creating original content since there are several services available.
Movies and TV shows still get released regularly, despite plenty of bad stuff. Additionally, streaming platforms’ budgets to hire top entertainment industry talent are increasing as well.
Cons of Streaming Services
The disadvantages are as follows:
Streaming platforms often conjure up images of paying money.
Even though streaming services are legal, they can still be quite expensive, especially if you want multiple platform subscriptions to access all your favorite content.
Geo-restricted Content Issues
Geo-restricted content may be an issue where you live. The majority of networks abide by copyright laws and policies, so certain shows and movies aren’t available in certain countries.
Safety and Security
The concept of online security might seem a bit far-fetched, but if you are not careful, you may encounter some issues.
The security protocols required for streaming platforms may not be available on every platform, putting you, as a user, at risk. Therefore, pay attention to what you use.
There are advantages and disadvantages to every technology and tool. However, it is for us to decide whether the merits overweigh the demerits and vice versa. Let us know if you have questions and queries.