With the advent of the Internet and the wide spread of broadband, multimedia outlets are now broadcasting directly to the Internet, streaming their content on-line. NBC, ABC and FOX — the three big broadcasting companies in the US — all have free streams of their most popular shows available on demand. The key though is that these shows have commercial interruptions and commonly only the most popular shows are shown. What if you wanted to watch live TV without these limits? The easiest way would be to find software that collects and maintains lists of unofficial, user ran streams of these channels. These applications are regularly updated and allow you to view countless channels, both domestic and foreign on your PC with no additional hardware required. The data is sent through your Internet connection instead of via the wiring outside your home!
Usually these applications require a modest computer, with at least a Pentium 600MHz+ processor and 128 MB of ram. If your system was purchased before 2000, it’s certain you meet these requirements. They require Windows Media Player 10 which is included with Windows XP by Microsoft. The software sends the links directly to Windows Media Player 10 and the content of the channel requested is then streamed to your computer.
The most respected application is made by SatelliteSoft. There product line of SatelliteTV for PC(TM) is the most widely used software and can be purchased on-line for 40-50 USD depending on version. It is updated regularly and they appear to be the market leaders in the field.
Most people know about YouTube and Google video and while small snippets of content are fine, when I think of TV and multimedia, I don’t think of a 30-second video. I want to watch the big games: the NBA Finals, the World Series, the Superbowl as well as my favorite shows in their full duration. I want to watch these on my laptop or possibly at work if allowed, and that’s why I stream it directly to my computer.