When considering the high price of cable TV packages, added service fees, and the fact that you’ll still need to sit through so many advertisements, you sometimes forget what show you’re actually watching. It's no surprise there’s a continuing shift towards ‘cutting the cord’ on cable TV.
Come to think of it, it wasn’t that long ago when there weren’t any other options other than cable TV and, well, service providers exploited that fact. In the early 2000s, if you spoke to someone about the possibility of not needing cable TV or even radio in their home, they’d likely have laughed.
Thankfully, we’re no longer at the mercy of cable companies who charge whatever they want and provide zero customer service when it’s required. A dream that became a reality in the mid-2000s thanks to two then-unknown companies: Netflix and YouTube.
But first, what exactly is streaming?
What is Streaming?
Streaming is the transmission of data, most commonly in video or audio, delivered at a constant rate from some source. This means that instead of the user having to wait for a download to finish before listening or watching, they can do so while the ‘download’ happens in the background.
‘Download’ in this sense doesn’t mean what we’re commonly used to. While in the past we’d download and store video and audio files locally on our computers until we decide to delete them, when we stream, data is automatically deleted from our devices once we’re done. Streaming also comes in several different forms:
1. Video game streaming
There are two forms of video game streaming; live and recorded.
Recorded streaming was (arguably) made popular thanks to PewDiePie, who currently sits on a gargantuan YouTube following with 110 million subscribers. Unlike live-streaming, the recorded form involves recording yourself playing a game and commentating over it, finally uploading the video onto online streaming platforms like YouTube.
Live-streaming, on the other hand, involves having a live recording of yourself playing a game, either as a voiceover or a combination of video and audio, most often done on Twitch.
If you’re thinking of becoming a video game streamer yourself, get yourself a good gaming router to minimise lag and maximise streaming speeds. Also, if you’re looking for a game to get started on, Mobile Legends is a great place to start!
2. Movie & TV streaming
Instead of having cable TV dictate what you watch and when you watch it, why not choose the show or movie you want at your convenience, without any advertisements to boot? Welcome to the wonderful world of movie and TV streaming!
Allowing you to stream shows on any number of devices, including TV, desktop and laptop computers, tablets, and even smartphones, streaming has made TV-on-the-go a reality. All you need is a subscription to one or more streaming services, and you can access their huge catalogues, take your pick, and binge.
Ever been stuck in a situation where you’re watching a TV show and had to end your session abruptly? Pausing or unplugging your TV and carrying it around isn’t feasible, is it? If you’re halfway through a show but need to head out, many services allow you to download videos onto your device so you can watch them on the go without using any mobile data. Talk about the ultimate deal!
3. Live TV streaming
If there’s a big event being broadcasted (for example, a UFC event or the Oscars), you’ll find it being live-streamed somewhere — sometimes for a nominal fee. This means that you’ll no longer have to subscribe to year-long cable TV bundles that feature a list of channels you might not even watch. Neither will you have to sign a lengthy contract just to watch a few hours’ worth of content since these have been made available as value-added services that you can just add-on and cancel as you please. Tied to existing subscriptions like your Fibre Broadband plan, you can opt for monthly subscriptions to your favourite channels or streaming media players like Apple TV 4K and minimise the overall cost of your bill.
4. Video streaming
If you’ve ever spent a bit of time on YouTube, you’ll know much of what you watch there can’t be called a ‘movie’ or ‘TV’. There’s about 300 hours’ worth of video content uploaded to YouTube every single hour, which makes for hours of entertainment watching interesting, funny, or educational videos.
But don’t think you’re limited to YouTube when it comes to video streaming; DailyMotion, Vimeo IGTV and many others are out there waiting to be explored.
5. Music streaming
Forget ever having to download nefarious-looking files hoping that they contain the music you’ve been scouring the web for. Those dark days are over thanks to music streaming services, including Deezer,, Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, SiriusXM and many others.
3 Must-Haves for a Seamless Streaming Experience
Love the idea of subscribing to a streaming service? Not so fast. There may be a couple of major frustrations when it comes to streaming your favourite content. Some of these include:
– Buffering due to slow internet speeds and low bandwidth
– Lags caused by slow internet, low latency and/or bandwidth issues
– Quality drops due to slow internet speeds and/or low bandwidth
– No new content to watch
As much as these issues can put a damper on your viewing experience, they can easily be avoided with these easy steps:
1. Fast internet connection
You might’ve noticed a common thread in most of the above frustrations.
A poor internet connection will cause huge headaches, whether you’re streaming TV, games, or listening to your favourite tunes. That’s exactly why it’s super important to ensure you have a super-fast and super stable internet connection when you’re planning on getting your stream on. M1 has a range of home Wi-Fi solutions to ensure lightning-fast data speeds so that you can enjoy smooth viewing and listening all day and night. Pair an M1 broadband connection with a mesh Wi-Fi router that eliminates dead Wi-Fi spots, and you’ll be good to go!
2. The right device(s)
Alright, it’s time to finally upgrade your admittedly very cool Matrix-model Nokia 8110 to something that actually has the features you need. But seriously, jokes aside, get yourself a new smartphone from just $0 upfront on a Bespoke Flexi Plan from M1 and you’ll have zero issues whatsoever streaming.
For static and live TV streaming, you’ll either need a Smart TV, an Apple TV, or Chromecast device. Plug it in, and you should have access to all your favourite streaming services.
3. Subscription to streaming services
This may be a bit obvious, but it’s important to sign up to whichever streaming services you’re keen on. If you’re unsure, Google the latest catalogue from each service to determine which you’d rather sign up for.
An important thing to add here is that because they’re all monthly subscriptions, you’re free to switch to another service every month if you so wish! Just make sure you read the terms and conditions to avoid being charged any hidden costs.
Top Video Streaming Services in Singapore
Singapore has a wide selection of streaming services. These are the key players available in the market:
Netflix is a powerhouse when talking about movie and TV streaming. With a library that’s constantly updated with some of the best original TV series and movies out there, plus a wealth of other content, Netflix is the de facto go-to option. Better yet, use a VPN to access a whole new slew of shows to binge on – Netflix’s library differs according to region.
2. Viu Premium
If Korean dramas and variety shows are what you’re searching for, Viu Premium is the ultimate choice. With unlimited downloads that allow you to watch series on the go and episode releases just 8 hours after their original telecast, you won’t miss a thing no matter where you are.
And if you’re wondering how to connect Viu on TV, it couldn’t be simpler — log into your Viu Premium account on your smart TV or via your Apple TV or other connected device. And voila! From smartphones to the big screens, the switch is seamless.
A huge fan of Hong Kong dramas? Access all your favourite TVB variety shows and dramas with TVBAnywhere+, which gives you access to the hottest TVB content. From the latest and greatest to fantastic classics and everything in between!
With technology advancing at an impressive rate, it’s a certainty that our options for streaming will only expand with time. Jump on the bandwagon by signing up with M1’s broadband and streaming options.