Pipul TV is a next-generation, Nigerian-based national education and entertainment television and media communications network that is established to provide premium, high quality media content for the underserved, low-income earners and students. The initiative is geared towards providing rich broadcast media content that is hitherto usually expensive and available only to the affluent, now to everyone regardless of social status, income levels, creed or standing. This services spearheads a new era of home media, combining the best of television, social, and digital life. It is an IPTV service that has eliminated the data access cost to subscribers. Pipul TV is the flagship service of Pipul Communications Limited, set up by a group of enterprising and visionary young Nigerians resolved to do something positive about changing the status quo rather than just whining about it. While the initiative took over three years to develop, the organisation was formally set up in January of 2016 in Abuja, Nigeria. Riding on the wealth of experience Pipul TV is driven by the shared belief that real change can be effected when everyone comes together to play their respective parts in developing our society, standards and way of life. Pipul TV is a platform that has integrated major players in every sphere of our educational, financial, social and entertainment sectors to provide a service and a commercial venture that creates over 50,000 direct job opportunities as well as support every sector and industry in the Nigerian economy.
As the Federal Government of Nigeria spearheads the drive towards migrating the national broadcast industry from analogue to digital, Pipul TV serves as the one-stop solution in that both digitalises the medium as well as provide the populace an experience more than value for money, introducing a first-of- its-kind service not available anywhere on the planet!
To make access to information and entertainment easy, limitless and very affordable especially for the low-income earners.
WHAT IS IPTV?
IPTV (Internet Protocol television) is a system through which television services are delivered using the Internet protocol suite over a packet-switched network such as a LAN or the Internet, instead of being delivered through traditional terrestrial, satellite signal, and cable television formats. Unlike downloaded media, IPTV offers the ability to stream the media in smaller batches, directly from the source. As a result, a client media player can begin playing the data (such as a movie) before the entire file has been transmitted. This is known as streaming media.
Since 1995 the term IPTV has been used to describe video and related services delivered over the internet. In the past this has meant sites like YouTube or even just videos posted onto website pages.
IPTV services may be classified into three main groups:
- Live television, with or without interactivity related to the current TV show;
- Time-shifted television: catch-up TV (replays a TV show that was broadcast hours or days ago), start-over TV (replays the current TV show from its beginning);
- Video on demand (VOD): browse a catalogue of videos, not related to TV programming.
IPTV basically delivers video signals over a data network, as data. If the video signal is in an analogue form (as is traditional television signals), the video signals and audio signals associated with the video signals are first converted to a digital form before they are transmitted. Typically, routing equipment then adds packet routing information to the digital content so that it can be routed through the Internet to consumers.
Thus, instead of receiving video or television signals broadcast over radio waves or coaxial cable, a consumer’s television is connected directly to a broadband Internet router and receives the digitized video or television signal, including the audio, directly over the Internet. An IPTV system requires the following key components:
- A device or adapter that converts video and audio signals into a form that enables consumers to watch such signals on their television set. This device bridges a consumer’s computer with television. There are a multitude of such devices available through IPTV providers, and some TV receivers have such capabilities built-in.
- A broadband access provider, which transmits high-speed data to end users by means of a broadband connection. Broadband access providers include local exchange telephone companies, Internet access providers, cable television companies, infrastructure providers, and wireless service providers.
- An IPTV provider, connecting a subscriber’s home computer to the Internet through a bridging device and providing software to operate the IPTV system. The system keeps track of which customers are active and viewing IPTV, and which features and services are authorized. When a customer requests a specific television channel or program to be viewed, the IPTV service provider’s equipment sends messages to a media gateway via the Internet, allowing the requested content to be connected to a selected media gateway source. There are a number of IPTV providers in the marketplace. A broadband access provider and an IPTV provider can be the same entity.
- Program and content providers, including entities that offer movies, sports channels, news services, and other sources of programming. There is an abundance of content in the video marketplace that can be delivered to subscribers over an IPTV system. Consumers could also become content providers of “broadcast quality” video; thousands are already posting to YouTube and similar on-line services.
IPTV allows a consumer to obtain video programming whenever the subscriber decides to view it. Put simply, IPTV is not just a distribution or playback method for video programming. It can and does serve to eliminate a fixed video programming schedule, and provide a multitude of program offerings similar to how information on the Internet can be accessed by any person at any time.
IPTV in Nigeria
There currently exist several direct-to-home (DTH) service providers in Nigeria. Foremost among these are cable TV services. IPTV service is currently in its nascent stages and the primary challenge has always been the high cost of data and the low availability of bandwidth or fast Internet connection speeds.
Due to the basic requirements of IPTV service, the positioned companies that can play in the sector are existing Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Several ISP firms have either publicly indicated their plans to launch the service on their respective networks or have actually began experimental service exclusively to their subscribers.
Subscribers, on the other hand, do not really care what technology is providing the service so far as they get to enjoy premium and preferred choice of content in high definition (HD) and interruption-free. So while the technology of transmission is IPTV, the service would be no different from (yet better in quality and content than) regular cable HD TV service.