Columbia ISA
Audio – Video

Streaming Video for home

Streaming TV

What do I need for Streaming TV?

You need 3 things,

1) High speed internet service
2) Smart TV and/or streaming device and TV
3) Streaming service provider(s)

Streaming TV is an option to view internet provided content such as news, sports, TV shows, movies and more on your TV. The advantage is access to much more content than local TV can provide and you can watch when you want to watch.

You decide what to watch (on demand) and when to watch instead of cable or satellite TV forcing you to watch on their schedule. You need fast home internet service, Wi-Fi and/or Ethernet communication with your home network and a TV streaming device if the smart TV is limited in the speed or operation of the user interface.

If I have a smart TV, do I need a streaming device?

Most smart TV owners also use a streaming device. Why? Because the smart TV often does not offer all the content access you desire. Music services are often only available with a streaming device. Also smart TVs usually are not updated as fast or as often as streaming devices. Streaming devices are portable, unlike a big screen TV. The TV is more expensive than a streaming device and as technology moves rapidly forward, you can buy a new advanced streaming device and get the new features for far less than a new TV.

High speed internet service

Check your local area to find out which providers are available. You may have more than one. All providers listed below offer speeds of at least 100Mbps or higher, which should be ample speed for streaming of any quality.

Internet service providers:
1) AT&T
2) COX
3) Spectrum
4) Xfinity
5) Verizon
6) Frontier

With your internet service, you will need a wireless router (Wi-Fi router) that has at least 802.11ac technology to ensure that your Fire Stick, Google TV, Apple TV, or other streaming device gets fast streaming speeds. You do not want any lag or drop outs in your video. You will get a modem and a router or a modem/router combo unit when you sign up for service with an internet provider. Your smart TV and/or your streaming device will connect to the router through the internet to a streaming service content provider.

Streaming service content providers

1) Netflix
2) Amazon Prime Video
3) Hulu
4) Tubi
5) Philo
6) YouTube TV
7) Crackle
8) Pluto TV
9) Paramount+

Amazon FREE streaming

Do I need a smart TV to stream?

No, you can use a non-smart TV, however you will need an adapter for the streaming device and you may have some limitations such as video resolution.

Why a Smart TV?

Basically the idea is to have a much broader content offering than broadcast (antenna) TV or cable TV. You are limited to your local TV channels or your cable or satellite TV channels. The internet gives you so much more access to viewing content.

Smart TV makers each use their own internal code to control the TV interface.

Q: Can I use a Smart TV without internet service? Yes, but you will only have antenna and paid cable/satellite TV channels and DVD/Bluray.

Q: Do I have to pay for internet content? Some content is free while other content is paid such as Netflix.

Q: Can a Smart TV spy on me? There can be some privacy concerns such as content providers tracking your viewing habits.

Q: Do I need a TV stick? Only if you think your smart TV is limiting your viewing.

Q: Who makes the best TV sticks/streaming devices? ROKU, Amazon, Google, Apple.

Q: How long do TV sticks last? 3 to 5 years, by then most likely they are outdated anyway.

Q: How do the TV sticks connect to the TV? HDMI is used typically.

Q: Do Smart TVs have built-in Wi-Fi? Yes, almost all of them do, but make sure it is compatible with your home wi-fi.

Q: Do I need Wi-Fi to use streaming TV? No, there are devices that connect using Ethernet cable.

Q: Can I use voice control to select content? Yes, Amazon, Google and Roku have this built-in to their latest devices.

Q: What are some free content providers? Crackle, Pluto, Tubi, Filmrise, Kanopy, IMDb TV, with some commercials.

Q: What Smart TVs are the best? Samsung, LG and Sony make the best TVs.

Q: Can I get surround sound? Yes, most services offer Dolby Digital Plus surround however the program content must offer surround and some do not, only stereo sound.

Q: Can I get Dolby ATMOS? Yes, if the program content has ATMOS and your home devices can process ATMOS.

Q: Is Bluetooth wireless audio available? Yes, most smart TVs offer wireless Bluetooth and most streaming devices have Bluetooth.

Q: How do I add apps to my smart TV?
How to Add Apps to a Samsung Smart TV
If you have a Samsung Smart TV and want an app that is not on your Smart Hub, download it from the Samsung App Store. Here's how:

Navigate to your HOME page or press your remote's Smart Hub button.

Select Apps from the menu bar.
On the My Apps screen, you will see your preloaded apps and other app categories. Browse to find an app you want to install, and then select the app's icon. When you select an app, you will go to its install page. Select Install, Download, or Add to Home.

The steps for adding apps to your smart TV depend on your TV brand, but most models have an option to search for apps on the home screen. You can download apps for free, but you may need to set up an account to use some streaming apps.

Q: What is an app? You can think of an app as an internet TV channel.

Streaming Devices


ROKU, with over 50 million accounts, has released many TV streaming devices beginning in 2008. Roku released the 10th generation of devices in Sept. 2021. Roku has a free channel of content with movies, TV shows, News, kids programs and also partners with content providers. ROKU has been the best overall experience and the least brand affiliated platform.

for more info see


Fire TV stick released in 2014 has been upgraded every few years since. Affiliated with Amazon Prime Video.

Amazon product box contains remote control, A/C adapter with USB, TV Stick with HDMI, USB power cable, HDMI adapter, batteries.
The HDMI adapter is used if your TV HDMI input port is not easily accessable. The A/C adapter is used if USB power is inadequate.
The latest Fire TV sticks will support 4K TV (3840x2160) while earlier versions support up to 1080p (1920x1080).
Supports 802.11a/b/g/n/ac wi-fi networks.

The streaming device plugs into the back of your television using an HDMI input (either with the stick itself or using the included adapter), and it connects to your home WiFi router to deliver media straight to your television using apps, just like a smartphone. The device is powered using the included micro USB cable, plugged into the back of your television USB or an AC wall adapter, The device takes up very little space behind your television and remains out of sight.

The remote was updated and can now control your television’s power and volume, in addition to the typical play/pause and navigation options on the remote. You can use Alexa by pressing a button on the remote.


Chromecast released in 2018 and Chromecast with Google TV released in 2020 has voice control with remote, interactive user interface, A/C adapter for power, dongle with HDMI connection. The ability to cast from your Android phone to your TV. Sold at Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Google Store.

see more Google TV


Apple TV for Apple users. 5th generation 32GB - 64GB, 1080p and 4K models, Connect to TV with HDMI from Apple TV box. Remote control.

see more Apple TV

Q: What can I watch? Movies, TV shows, News, Sports, kids programming and more.

Q: What streaming service providers are the best? Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video.

Q: How much do content providers charge? Paid content ranges from about $7 per month to $80 per month.

Q: How much data usage? 3GB to 7GB per hour.

Q: Can I get free content? Yes, there are free classic movies, free classic TV shows, news, weather, and more.

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