With the latest TV solution becoming a trend, it is easy to confuse OTT with other terms like Internet protocol television (IPTV). To shed light on this matter, one should understand the terms and the differences between them.
OTT, to put it simply, is the business model that uses publicly accessible Internet to deliver freemium and economical VOD contents. OTT are unmanaged contents usually provided by studios, channels, or independent services. Since it is publicly accessible, OTT does not involve dedicated network or infrastructure.
On the other hand, IPTV is the technology that manages the delivery of said contents. Unlike OTT, IPTV has a dedicated network or infrastructure provided by local telecoms, its operators. It is used primarily for premium and real-time content.
In terms of quality, IPTV offers better services compared to those that OTT network provides. Since IPTV is fully controlled and runs on private networks, it delivers lesser interruptions and higher quality videos among the viewers. Although IPTV generally offers more quality, OTT has been gaining popularity over the years with its low cost and flexible contents. Aside from the above, other notable differences between these two solutions include the following:
- Transmission network: OTT network uses public Internet and local telecom while IPTV utilizes dedicated owned or leased networks.
- Receiver: Both use the set-top box, but OTT can be viewed on mobile devices while IPTV is limited to PC.
- Routing topology: HTTP-based Unicast and UDP/TCP-based Simulated Multicast for OTT while Multicast and Initial unicast burst during channel change leading to Multicast join for IPTV.