About IPTV Internet Service

IPTV stands for Internet Protocol TV—but what does "Internet Protocol" mean? It's the essence of how the Internet works.

Send an email to a friend or download a web page and the information you set in motion doesn't travel in one big lump, as you might expect. Instead, it's broken up into lots of small pieces, known as packets, each of which may be "switched" (sent) to its destination by a different route. Packet switching, as this is known, is the basic principle of how any information travels over the Internet. The computers that link the Net together don't know what any given packet means or what it does. All they know is the IP address (a numeric "house and street name" given to every computer on the Internet) where the packet has to go—and they treat all packets equally.

Artwork: Packet switching is the key to how the Internet works. It involves breaking up a piece of information and sending it in small pieces from its origin to its destination—a little bit like moving house by mailing all the bricks in separate envelopes. Read more about it in our article about the Internet.

The Internet isn't designed to do a particular job, such as delivering emails: it's simply a highly efficient, computerized "postal" system for delivering zillions of packets. The simple but amazing consequence of this is that as long as you can turn information into packets, you can send it over the Internet—whatever the information might be. That's why the Internet can be used for sending emails, downloading web pages, making telephone calls (using a technology known as VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol), watching TV—and doing a dozen other things that have not yet been invented. If someone had designed the Internet more rigidly, purely for shuttling emails for example, using it for other things, such as telephone calls or TV, might not have been possible