Streaming Versus Downloading: What Works Best?

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man, music, phone @ Pixabay

When it comes down to enjoying your favorite movies on your device, you are presented with two different options: Streaming or downloading.

But, choosing one option might not be as obvious as it appears. It depends on how you are going to use or consume the content.

Here we have discussed everything about both the options and added our thoughts on which option is better than the others.

So, what are we waiting for? Let’s get started.

What Is Streaming?

Streaming is the process of playing media files that are saved on other media devices. The files are usually saved in the clouds, computer system, media server, or other places where other people can access them.

Once the media file is uploaded to any storage device, a media streamer can easily open and access the file. 

Let us be clear about the fact that streaming doesn’t involve moving or copying the media file. It simply means you are playing the media files.

In streaming, the media files can usually come from a website. For example, Netflix allows users to stream movies and TV shows. 

What Is Downloading?

Downloading the file is another way of playing media files on your computer. While downloading the media file, the media file is saved in your computer system. As this media file is saved in the computer system, users can play it later.

When downloading a file, the source file is copied from the resource location and is saved in your computer system. This might take a couple of minutes, depending on your internet speed.

However, there is one thing you need to be careful about while downloading the files. Do not indulge yourself in downloading any pirated content as it involves legal action against you.

No, we are not saying that you cannot download pirated content. We are warning you about the risk that comes with it. You can mitigate the risk by simply using VPN software.

That being said, if you are more of a downloader than a streamer, The Pirate Bay website will certainly suit you. Here you get the latest collection of movies to download and watch.

Streaming Vs. Downloading: Comparison

Both streaming and downloading involve the media file being sent to the device. The simple difference is that the media file is only played as it’s available in streaming. While downloading, create a copy of the original content in your computer system.

To further simplify the concept, both methods involve copying the original content, but the downloading methods leave a copy in your system.

1. Connectivity

If we compare downloading and streaming, in streaming, you need connectivity to access the media file and play. In addition, you can continue watching the media file only with a stable internet connection. If the internet connection becomes unstable, you might experience buffering.

In the case of downloading, you only need connectivity till the file is copied in your system. Once the file is copied, you don’t need connectivity. In addition, you can watch the media file whenever you want.

2. Storage

On the storage front, streaming might be the best choice to go for. Streaming does not require any storage as the media file stays on the media server; you just use an internet connection to play. This feature really comes in handy when you have low storage in your device.

However, the same thing cannot be said for downloading. For downloading, you need to have device storage equivalent to the size of a media file. If not, you won’t be able to download it.

3. Dependency

Streaming is dependent on a stable internet connection. If there is any fluctuation in your internet connection, you might experience buffering.

On the other hand, downloading is more dependable. You can wait until the downloading is completed and watch the media file without any internet connection. This really helps when you have no internet connection. The only downside is that you have to download the files beforehand.

Final Verdict

Comparing the two methods, we have concluded that both the methods come with their set of pros and cons. Which method you choose depends on what you need. However, downloading might be a better option for watching movies, while streaming works great with devices using lower bandwidth.


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