Key Difference: 

OTT stands for Over The Top. It provides content over the internet instead of cable or satellite.

IPTV stands for Internet Protocol television transmits. It provides content over the Internet using a dedicated and managed network such as set up box that needs a broadband connection.

Nowadays, Our relationship with television sets are changed in last few years. We have gone from having large T.V. sets to now watching contents on mobiles and tablets.

The introduction of services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Airtel Xstream and many more have resulted in huge change in how we consume content now. The greatest change in the world of television definitely is Internet. Internet made it easier not only for service providers to deliver content, but also for viewers to watch it without requiring extensive equipment.

Many people have heard from their providers to talk about the terms, OTT and IPTV. But if you don’t have extensive knowledge of how content is delivered to your television, it can leave you confused.

Let’s know in deep,”What these two terms mean and why do they matter?”.

Both the terms refer to the way the content is delivered to viewers.-


OTT (Over The Top), provides content over the internet instead of cable or satellite. This refers to any content that is transmitted over the Internet but these days it is often combined with video on demand, which allow users to watch content at any time they want.

However, pure OTT content includes live-streaming, over the internet, etc.


The other popular method of content delivery system is IPTV, which stands for Internet Protocol television. This type of delivery system transmits content over the internet using a dedicated and managed work network such as set-up box that needs a broadband connection for streaming.

This method is commonly used for providing premium channels such as sports or premium content.

The main difference:

The main difference between the two is the way the content is delivered, the cost, set-up and Transmission quality.

While OTT includes any content delivered, over the Internet, In IPTV the content must be transmitted through a dedicated broadband connection to a set-up box. OTT is generally cheaper as compared to IPTV and also requires zero installation.

The biggest difference is the transmission quality as OTT transmission depends your Internet quality, so a low bandwidth will most-likely result in a low quality viewing, while IPTV there is dedicated broadband connection for the transmission.

(These are the two different terms through which content is delivered to you.

Comparison Between OTT (Over The TOP) and IPTV (Internet Protocol Television):

OTT (Over The Transmission):

1. Any type of content that is provided over the Internet is referred as OTT service.

2. Transmits over the Internet instead of satellite or cable.

3. It doesn’t allows you to play the content whenever you want such as live-streaming sports.

4. It uses no dedicated network, infrastructure is made available provided by an operator.

5. In this content type is no premium.

6. Can be viewed on any device data or Wi-Fi and does not require a dedicated broadband based connectivity.

7. Example of OTT are – Live-streaming, Online live-sports, Skype.

8. It’s Pros are – Low cost, Minimal Installation and varied programming.

9. It’s cons are – Streaming depends on internet quality.

– No access to cable only shows.

– Some ISPs enforce a data cap on data bandwidth.

IPTV (Internet Protocol Television):

1. Content is provided over the internet to set-up box using a dedicated, managed network or infrastructure which can then be streamed over the Television.

2. Transmits over the Internet to a dedicated setup box.

3. Plays like a regular T.V. but it is streamed over the Internet rather than satellite or cable.

4. Delivered via ISP’s own infrastructure which can resemble T.V. but differs because of lack of satellites and cables.

5. In this content type is mostly premium.

6. Requires a device to be connected to a dedicated broadband based connection.

7. Examples of IPTV are – U-Verse (AT&T), Prism T.V., Verizon FiOS.

8. It’s pros are – High-quality Video with fewer interruptions, view-on-demand and get shows date of release, no-installation just setup box.

9. It’s cons are – Sold as Subscription-based packages.

– Internet speed can affect the quality of streaming.

9 thoughts on “OTT vs IPTV

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