How to generate hotel revenue using IPTV tech?

As technology continues to evolve, hotels are adopting new ways to enhance the guest experience and generate revenue. One such way is through the use of IPTV technology, which enables hotels to offer a range of services to their guests through their in-room televisions.


In recent decades, competition in the hotel industry has intensified with the proliferation of various hotel booking services. It is now much easier for guests to compare booking prices in a region and choose the optimal option, leaving more expensive offers to the left. This can lead to some hotels losing revenue. This could be your hotel as well, and you will only realise that something is wrong when quarterly and annual reports show such a discrepancy with previous results. So you need to plan some countermeasures in advance. One way to plug such holes in your hotel's budget is to offer additional revenue-generating services to guests who stay at your property. In this article you will learn how to upgrade your hotel's TV system with IPTV technology and generate additional revenue.


This graph indicates an example of the booking price drop, prepared by KriyaRevGEN




ROI from Hotel TV systems upgraded with IPTV technology



IPTV has been the subject of extensive investment over the past decade, following the global trend IT. To be fair, a hotel following the TV hotel trends actually benefits from installing the latest Hotel TV system. Value-added services generate additional revenue, facilitate hotel management and help maintain competition. This kind of investment in hotel infrastructure is a good sign ROI and not only covers the installation costs, but also generates additional revenue when guests start using paid IPTV services.


In the last decade, the revenues of several hotel chains have increased with the help of IPTV technology, which has significantly improved the TV system in these hotels. Hotel guests enjoyed the additional services of the IPTV system and the convenience of the IPTV user interface. Hotel managers and administrators found it easier to manage the hotels equipped with the PMS integrated with the TV system.



Technical data



The reason why IPTV technology offers such advantages for TV hotel systems is that it uses an IP protocol; Android in the client app and Linux OS in the server part. IP is a protocol that allows data to be transmitted in both directions. So if your guests want to watch the latest movies...? That's no problem. Do you want to collect statistics from each room and see which movies your guests prefer? That's entirely up to you. Is your hotel a resort where many families stay? Kids and parents want to play video games, and the IPTV set-top box is actually a good gaming platform. And thanks to the openness of the Android and Linux platforms, which are supported by a large community of developers and enthusiasts, it's possible to implement just about any feature.


CATV, analog TV and DTV systems do not remotely resemble the capabilities of IPTV. And, of course, there is no chance that these older technologies can match IPTV in terms of flexibility, variety of services and features. With IPTV, any kind of digital service can be offered via a hotel set-top box TV, and you can charge for the use of these services. The integration possibilities open up another field for the overarching use of the IPTV system with the aim of facilitating the hotelier's work and making operations more transparent.



Trends in the hotel TV system solutions


In the first half of the last hundred years, television was the most sought-after form of media entertainment for hotel guests. Thanks to IPTV technology, hotel guests still watch TV, even though they all have tablets and smartphones with access to their favorite content and apps. Yes, they tend to get distracted by their smartphones or tablets, but IPTV is there to save the day. TV Hotel systems are not the same as they were 10 years ago. They now offer the same features guests are used to on their tablets or smartphones, only this time on a big screen and from the comfort of their couch or bed.



Graph, prepared by VentureBeat based on an Accenture survey



"Watching TV shows on devices other than the traditional television set is becoming more widespread, and the pace at which people's viewing habits are changing is accelerating. According to a recent survey, only 23 percent of people now prefer TV to watch shows, down from 55 percent last year."

Says Techspot, based on an Accenture survey




IPTV Entertainment



Systems based on IPTV technology in hotels TV are true entertainment centers that include all kinds of services typical of networked platforms and devices we use every day. Internet, social networking, music, YouTube videos, Netflix movies, games, apps, messenger services and many other things are now hosted through the hotel's TV system.



Even ordering food and checking out are now just a click away through the hotel's interface TV. Images are so much more engaging than a single line of text in a printed menu. Guests who are otherwise unsure and afraid of what they might get can now order without fear. Other useful service applications are also available for quick integration. Aggregation is currently a big trend, with numerous systems available at IT, and the ability to integrate them is critical when it comes to efficient workflows.




Services with added value


Surveys show that revenue from value-added services is growing rapidly.


IPTV is clearly having a good time, as both the CAGR for the industry as a whole and RGI, which impacts hotel RevPar metrics, are expected to increase immensely over the next few years. For example, iBahn, backed by financing from JPMorgan Chase, has successfully invested in upgrading the TV system of hotel chains such as Hilton, Marriott and others with IPTV technology. These big sharks can not be wrong; IPTV is the right choice for any hotel looking to increase revenue.


Netflix has shown that viewers prefer the content of their choice over programming on traditional live channels TV. The hotel's system TV, supported by the IPTV Video on Demand server, gives guests the freedom of choice they desire. The list of live channels from TV can be easily changed or updated, especially for IP content that is not tied to the geographical location of the hotel. Thousands of channels, different languages, time zones and genres are available from content providers over IP networks.





IPTV potential


Many direct revenue generation models are available through Hotel TV 's system. Renting the latest movies, accessing paid movies and channels, ordering food or purchasing merchandise from the e-store, making international calls, accessing the Internet and more - all through a unified IPTV system interface. Indirect revenues are also generated from information services such as advertising, banners and digital signage for various services such as car rental, tickets, travel guides, etc.


The potential of IPTV to enhance the guest viewing experience is becoming increasingly clear. A 2010 report by MRG indicates that over 11 million hotel rooms and 1 million airline seats could be IPTV-enabled. IPTV expands choice and offers the potential for a range of interactive services, such as the ability to instantly purchase items that appear on a TV program - which could create additional revenue streams for hoteliers. - Amadeus, "Hotels 2020: Beyond Segmentation


Here are some ways to generate revenue off hotel TV using IPTV tech.


1.Offer pay-per-view movies and TV shows


One of the most common ways to generate revenue off hotel TV is by offering pay-per-view movies and TV shows. With IPTV technology, guests can easily access a variety of entertainment options through their in-room TV. Hotels can charge a fee for each movie or show watched, with the revenue going directly to the hotel.


2. Sell advertising space


Hotels can also generate revenue by selling advertising space on their IPTV platform. For example, they can offer local businesses the opportunity to advertise their products or services to guests through targeted advertising. Hotels can charge a fee for advertising space, with rates based on factors such as ad duration, time of day, and location.


3.Provide in-room dining menus


Another way to generate revenue off hotel TV is by offering in-room dining menus through the IPTV platform. Guests can easily browse the menu and place orders directly from their TV, with the revenue going to the hotel. This not only generates revenue, but also enhances the guest experience by providing a convenient and streamlined way to order food.


4.Offer virtual tours and activities


Hotels can also use IPTV technology to offer virtual tours and activities to guests. For example, they can provide virtual tours of nearby attractions, such as museums or historical sites, or offer interactive activities, such as cooking classes or fitness classes. These experiences can be offered for a fee, generating additional revenue for the hotel.


5. Sell upgrades and add-ons


Finally, hotels can use IPTV technology to sell upgrades and add-ons to guests. For example, they can offer premium movie channels, high-speed internet access, or late check-out for an additional fee. By offering these upgrades and add-ons through the IPTV platform, hotels can generate additional revenue while providing guests with a convenient and streamlined way to enhance their stay.



The wide range of content ensures that you meet your guests' expectations



A TV hotel service must include multiple language packages in the channel list to accommodate the main nationalities of guests. This way, a hotel can be sure that it will not miss out on potential revenue due to differences in content localization. This is where IP content comes into play. Typically, live channels are received from broadcast sources such as satellites or antennas. With IP networks, live streams can be received from almost anywhere in the world. This way, guests can watch their local news or favorite shows in their native language despite the long distance. With IP content, it is very easy to add, remove or manage channels.


If you have exclusive content on your network, you need to protect it, especially to make sure you do not lose potential revenue. Hotel TV 's system makes it easy to protect contents as if they were in a safe. By using various techniques to encrypt the contents and making it impossible to reuse the stream address, the IPTV system effectively hides the contents from malicious intentions.




Network and infrastructure for the hotel TV powered by IPTV



IPTV technology has no special requirements and any hotel TV can be upgraded with it. Ideally, CAT5 or CAT6 cable should be used to connect newly installed IPTV headends and set-top boxes that become part of the Hotel TV system. An existing Ethernet network can be used or a new network can be installed.


In cases where it is not possible to install an Ethernet network, a coax network can be used as it still allows the transmission of IP data. Switching from coax to hybrid TV is possible and is an effective solution. Since IPTV can share a network with services such as VoIP telephony, broadband Internet and other services, a hotel can save on infrastructure and use a single converged network for all services that require such a network. The only concern is bandwidth and proper network segmentation, which can be successfully solved if the network is properly planned and designed from the beginning.




Android set-top boxes



Android STB is a classic way to enable an IPTV service on a regular TV panel. It is a small computer specifically designed to decode IPTV streams and provides an Android OS environment to host an Internet browser, apps, games and a client app for IPTV services. Although there are several ways to enable IPTV services on a TV panel, the set-top box solution is the most reliable and flexible.


Nevron FastBox product


FaSTBox Luxury Set-Top-Box with all the most demanding inputs for hotel needs.A set-top box running Android OS, with the IPTV client app installed, provides a smooth, intuitive and rich user experience that can be optimized, customized and enhanced through simple software updates. By integrating with other systems used in the hotel, the TV system becomes a powerful medium that provides guests with the most requested and important services and is used by hotel management to manage the property.




Alternatives to set-top boxes



Global convergence is increasing and trends tell us that we need to integrate things; IPTV technology is also trying to stay integrated. Interestingly, the external set-top box has been moved inside TV, in the form of a small module that turns ordinary home panels TV into smart TVs. Manufacturers such as Samsung, LG, Sony and Philips are trying to market their smart TV models in a way that adds value to TV users and positions the smart TV as just another type of Internet-enabled device. In fact, it seems like a good idea to extend the functionality of TV devices with apps, an Internet browser, online content, games, communication apps, social networks, and so on.


This has indeed worked and helped users not abandon TV in favor of more flexible smartphones, tablets and laptops. Still, manufacturers impose far too many restrictions and specifications on their own TV hardware and software. We recommend reading this article: hospitality TV. There you will learn why using an external set-top box as part of a TV system in a hotel is still a better option than using a SMART TV client.




Real use cases



A good example we had recently is the luxury cruise ship Silversea. The company offers 5-star service and strives to provide it in all areas. On TV, there was no solution for running TVs in areas where there was no satellite signal. Guests then had nothing to do with TV, nothing to watch. Now, with an IPTV system, when they turn on TV, they can see a large collection of movies and services with locations and times that the ship offers. Instead of the dead TV channels, they can see a collection of Silversea promo expedition videos (ads for other expeditions) and live cameras on board, as well as a special TV channel that shows the ship's location on a map. They have found that guests are more satisfied. When we set up Hotel TV 's system, they personally and specifically thanked us for the movies and the ship map. When we later spoke with support on the ship, they said that the reports of TVs not working had immediately decreased. Below is a picture taken on the ship after the IPTV system went live.



Silversea Explorer I.T. Communications Officer, June 2017


Another good example is Rogla, Unitur Sport resort & Climatic SPA. There are winter and summer activities there, and athletes train all year round. Their company also makes all kinds of tools, so we decided to set up a shop menu at the hotel TV with bike tools that guests could buy. After a few months, they reported that guests were buying tools quite frequently. We were sceptical at first because we don't usually create this type of content, but it seems to be working here because guests are coming in regularly. Below is an example of a full-screen image of an info channel promoting ski tickets. The info is automatically removed when the duration of the promotion expires. The receptionist no longer has to worry about which offers need to be removed.



Screen image advertising ski tickets at Rogla, Unitur Sport resort & Climatic SPA




In short...


Finally, we take a look at the current situation in the hotel market and the systems of TV and how IPTV technology can help. Hotels are facing more competition from booking services and the hotel industry has to face this new reality. TV Manufacturers are trying to retain customers by offering converged devices that can do more as they have to compete with smartphones and tablets. Would not it be a smart move for a hotel to take advantage of this strategy and offer something else from its hotel TV in addition to the channels from TV?


Fortunately, the IPTV industry cares about its customers and offers many opportunities for hotels looking to generate additional revenue through value-added services they offer their guests via TV. IPTV offers another way to reduce a hotel's costs by using coaxial cable or a converged Ethernet network. It also supports integrated management tools such as the Property Management System, which enables hotel management to manage the hotel more effectively.




Have you won yet?


IPTV technology offers hotels a range of opportunities to generate revenue and enhance the guest experience. By offering pay-per-view movies and TV shows, selling advertising space, providing in-room dining menus, offering virtual tours and activities, and selling upgrades and add-ons, hotels can generate revenue while providing guests with a convenient and personalized experience. As technology continues to evolve, hotels that embrace IPTV technology will be well-positioned to succeed in a competitive industry.


Is your hotel in the league of most popular and most booked hotels? Can your guests say that everything was perfect during their stay? At Nevron, we have already taken care of your guests and are ready to help you improve your hotel business by upgrading the TV hotel system and using the best IPTV technologies developed with the latest trends in mind.


Contact us today for a free consultation and let our specialists discover more ways to give your guests a new look at the media entertainment they can receive through the hotel's TV system.

Android STB vs. Linux STB


Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows, Tizen, and even HTML5 are all suitable for hosting client applications. But for various reasons, Android is the safe frontrunner among the platforms chosen as the operating system for set-top boxes in IPTV solutions. Other operating systems like Linux or iOS are also an option, but Android is the preferred platform for many reasons.

Android is currently the mainstream platform for embedded systems and has a number of advantages. Apart from the fact that it is supported by a worldwide community of hardware vendors and software developers, this operating system offers a whole range of advantages that surpass other platforms in the consumer segment.







The interaction with the client device determines how successful the implementation of a particular service will be from the user's point of view. Rich rendering capabilities for GUI elements and fast responses to user commands are key to user satisfaction. Android STB has achieved a lot in this regard and provides continuous development to constantly improve these important elements of the Android operating system. See Fig. 1 for statistics on the latest GL commands supported by Android devices at the hardware level, which means that most devices offer excellent GUI rendering capabilities.


Most Android devices support the latest OpenGL ES versions







Today, Android is in use on more than 2 billion devices, half of which use the latest versions of Lollipop and Marshmallow. This is a clear indication that Android truly satisfies the masses, is easy to update, and is appreciated by users. The user experience is taken into account at all levels, from the inclusion of APIs in the system that help integrate app functions to the deep optimization of the system's core processes so that it works flawlessly on all types of hardware used by manufacturers for their devices.




Developer friendly



Android STB offers a wide range of integration features by default and supports a variety of protocols and standards. At the same time, it is a system supported by a global network of organizations, institutions, and developer teams that use the Android SDK and write Java, C, and C++ applications with amazing functionality. Fig. 2 shows that most devices have updated Android versions installed, which means that the security, UX, and functionality of the Android platform used in embedded systems and mobile devices worldwide is in a very good state and meets the current expectations of users and developers.

Most Android devices run the latest Android 5, 6, and 7 versions.



On the other hand, Linux is believed to be the root of Android, leading to the false belief that Linux is the better choice. Undoubtedly, Linux shows great results when a set of libraries and modules are well matched to the kernel version and hardware. But let us face it, the resources required to create and support the enormous amount of custom code are not only expensive, but can never match the speed at which updates are released for Android. For what comes standard in the latest Android release, a development team on Linux might need an impractically large amount of resources, and then would not necessarily get the same results that would be much easier to achieve on Android.




DRM on Android STB and Linux STB



Several DRM solutions are available on many platforms, with some preferred by DRM vendors. Widevine DRM, for example, is a Google product that has certain optimizations for smooth playback of secured content on devices running Android. Verimatrix, with its VCAS DRM, also works well on Android, with the extensible DRM framework embedded in the system and even using specific hardware features of some devices to achieve better performance. Linux is also supported by the major DRM systems, although the integration process is a bit more specific, which can affect video playback performance and content owner consent to the client device, depending on how securely the software layer interacts with the hardware itself.

Examination of market data, statistics and customer feedback shows that Android is the preferred platform for DRM adoption. Manufacturers support the more popular OS, especially Google with its Widevine DRM system optimized for Android even at the hardware layer. Android STB is the right choice.




Interested to find out more about STB and Smart TV Hospitality TV Solutions?



In order to make a proper decision about which Hospitality TV Solution to choose you are invited to get in touch with Nevron IPTV consultant. Both Hospitality TV Solutions will be presented to you. The pros and cons of both Solutions will be discussed in-depth in order for you to fully understand them. Please write an email to

Promote your business with an IPTV portal


IPTV/OTT technology has so much to offer that at some point it becomes difficult to consolidate it all in one place so that administrators, editors, and users can easily access, manage, and monitor it.


Thanks to the technology from WEB and a set of iOS and Android frameworks UI used by IPTV Portal, it is possible to provide a truly cross-platform and multilingual interface with great usability and many options for customization. Such an interface can provide access to and management of all services of an IPTV/OTT solution on any device via a web browser or native application:




Cross-platform accessibility



The ability to play media content on any screen or device, even the one you carry in your pocket, expands your freedom to enjoy your favourite movies, TV and other media when and where you want. For administrators of IPTV/OTT solutions that bring the full variety of digital entertainment to your screen, it is much more convenient to manage all IPTV/OTT components such as audio/video streamers or IPTV/OTT middleware through a unified backend office - regardless of OS, model or manufacturer of your device.


As long as you have an up-to-date web browser and Internet access on your device, you can access the IPTV/OTT portal and all offered IPTV services.


Multiple devices



The modular architecture of the IPTV end-to-end solution makes it easier


HTML5, iOS and Android frameworks UI provide some freedom in developing the design and logic of the IPTV portal user interface.


The IPTV portal takes advantage of this by providing the ability to aggregate all services provided by specific IPTV/OTT systems or simply add more services such as cloud gaming. IPTV portal with modular architecture and unified back-end office:


the IPTV portal can be easily modified, allows adding new services and supports more media types, introduces a better approach to system management and improves user experience.


This multi-interface IPTV/OTT platform architecture enables easy integration of new services such as e-shops, food ordering, catalogues and other cross-sales and promotion tools that generate additional revenue, which is in high demand in the hotel industry:  Ancillary bookings represent a significant opportunity to add revenue while increasing guest engagement.




Get the security of a server-driven user interface



IPTV portal content and styling, based on SDUI principles, are provided by the server backend. Client devices and native applications receive an updated version of the user interface each time they connect to the server.


Proprietary interfaces are far less flexible and cannot be updated as easily because they are hard-coded for the client devices and written for a specific platform.


In contrast, the IPTV portal based on HTML5 and the mobile OS framework is much more secure.


It is based on standards used everywhere, and most security or performance issues are quickly fixed with prompt updates and notifications to users and administrators, while the fanciest design and usability features are implemented faster compared to proprietary interfaces.


Custom IPTV viewing portal




The interactive IPTV portal is a great advertising tool



For IPTV/OTT systems, the use of an interactive IPTV portal is obviously a great advantage - IPTV/OTT aims to replace classic media broadcasting solutions by offering interactivity and flexibility that older systems such as CATV, VCR and DVD cannot provide.


IPTV Portal is no longer just a replacement for a TV device. Rather, it is a hub for media entertainment services, shopping, event announcements, room services and much more.


For users, it's a convenient way to access their favorite media content. And for operators, hotels and content providers, it's a powerful, revenue-generating tool that can be easily adapted to changing market conditions and target group interests.


Do you feel inspired to use the IPTV portal? Nevron's IPTV products are optimized for effective use in a variety of industries. Contact us today for a free demonstration of a balanced IPTV portal. Many hoteliers, cruise ship builders and telecommunications operators are already maximizing the utilization and profitability of their facilities and network infrastructure with the Nevron IPTV system.


How an IPTV TV System compares to Cable, Satellite, and OTT


On the market today there are a variety of different TV systems. There is cable TV, satellite TV, IPTV and last but not least OTT (over-the-top) streaming. And making the right decision about which TV connection is best for your situation can be very difficult. Why IPTV? We have briefly summarized all the information you need to make the right decision.

Usually, more options mean more power to the consumer. However, this is only true if you understand the specifics of each TV connection well enough to make an informed decision.



The basics of television


There are several ways to play television programs on your TV screen. You can go the traditional route and connect to the broadcast network, you can stream only the content you want over the Internet, or you can set up a dedicated IPTV system and enjoy the best of both worlds.


Suitable broadcast networks:
● Satellite TV
● Cable television



As the name implies, broadcast networks broadcast the television program from a distribution center and allow you to "tune in" to the channels that the broadcast signal carries. To achieve this, cable providers TV TV use their own physical network connected to a coaxial cable. The satellite TV, on the other hand, uses radio waves that travel by air from a communications satellite directly to the consumer's location, where they are received by a satellite dish.


Applicable Internet networks:
● OTT streaming



Unlike cable and satellite networks, which transmit content in real time, IP networks transmit data packets from the server to the user's terminal only upon request. This principle is known as the Internet Protocol and also enables the delivery of e-mail, the use of websites, and the use of various other cloud services.


Both IPTV and OTT services provide content via the same Internet protocol, so they are very similar in this respect. However, they differ in the way they distribute their content. OTT basically streams over the Internet, while IPTV requires a private, dedicated network.


IPTV and OTT services primarily transmit content that is stored on the server, so users can access that content over the Internet at any time. However, a dedicated IPTV system can do both, and that is where its strength lies.




Types of television networks



Even if you have never heard of IPTV, there's a good chance that you have already used it without knowing it. Actually, anyone who has watched live channels TV or video on demand through their digital television service has experienced IPTV in its essential form. Due to its attractive features and future-proof technology, IPTV is now a very attractive alternative to cable or digital satellite broadcasts that is worth taking a closer look at.


In simple terms, IPTV refers to a process in which both live video TV and stored video (on-demand or pay-per-view) are transmitted to the end user via the same network as Internet content.


It is a different way of distributing broadcast-quality content to consumers. Broadcast-quality content in this case represents all the features consumers expect from their digital television service provider, including popular channels on HD. From the user's perspective, IPTV provides an experience similar to traditional cable or satellite television. Turn on TV, select a channel with the remote control, and enjoy the program. However, because IPTV uses the Internet Protocol to deliver digital content, providers soon realized that they could integrate different services across platforms, leading to a convergence of voice, data and TV over the same network, all using the same language, through one provider.







Many, if not all, of the cable systems in use today are hybrid fiber-coaxial networks. These are basically the same as the hybrid fiber-coaxial network that delivers broadband Internet to your home via cable.


However, before the signal reaches your home, it is transmitted in the form of radio waves from a communications satellite to your cable provider's distribution center, called a headend. At the headend, the radio signal is modulated for distribution over a fiber-optic cable, which then transmits the signal at high speed over a physical network.


The fiber transmits the signal, along with the television channels and Internet data, to a communications node near you, where the network is converted from fiber to coaxial cable. For a better illustration, you can think of the main fiber optic line as a tree and the individual copper coaxial cables as the branches that spread out to the individual units in that area. This is the main reason why cable links are called shared links.


Before the signal is transmitted to your home, it is demodulated at the local node so that it can be passed over the coaxial cables. The final destination of this signal is a IPTV TV system, your set-top box, or the TV itself if it is equipped with the necessary hardware and software to decode the incoming data into video and audio that can be played back on TV. A specific frequency is reserved for each channel in your cable plan, and when you switch between channels, you set those frequencies.


Have you ever wondered how your cable provider prevents you from accessing all the channels it offers? In the analog era, it was encrypted signals, but in the digital age, access to subscriptions is regulated by encryption. Before the signal leaves the cable provider's distribution center, it is encrypted and decrypted with keys on the user's end. Web security works similarly, often switching between different encryption approaches to prevent hacking. It should be noted that analog cable signal transmission is very different from digital, which dominates the market today.







We've already learned that cable providers TV intercept satellite transmissions in the initial stages of their distribution network before sending the signal over a physical wire to their end customers. Satellite providers TV, on the other hand, send a wireless signal from the satellite to the end customer's satellite dish. Today, there are two forms of satellite reception TV: TVRO (television-only reception) and DBS (Direct Broadcast Satellite, or "direct to home" DBSTV).


In general, TVRO technology is somewhat older than DBS technology. This is evidenced by the much smaller dish required for DBS to receive a 100% digital high frequency signal, as opposed to the much larger dish required to receive the low frequency, digital/analog TVRO broadcasts. The TV satellite shares satellite radio bandwidth with mobile radio signals and radar systems in the 3-30 GHz range.


From the satellite dish, the signal is relayed either to a dedicated IPTV headend or directly to the end user's set-top box, which decodes and displays the content. Similar to cable TV, the channels are encrypted to prevent uncontrolled access.


So far, the satellite TV sounds very promising, but it's not entirely free of shortcomings. Due to the use of high frequency radio waves, the signal is more susceptible to interference. Nevertheless, the TV satellite is generally the best choice for areas where a physical connection is simply not possible.




OTT streaming



Netflix, HBO now and Roku are among the most popular OTT content providers available today. The interesting thing about these providers is that they deliver their content in a different way than we've known before. Because they don't have their own infrastructure, these third-party providers can't stream content in the traditional sense. Instead, they only stream purchased and requested content directly to the end user's device over the same infrastructure that connects the user to the Internet.


Streaming high-quality video requires a reliable Internet connection with sufficient bandwidth to support email exchanges, Internet browsing, and other Internet activities simultaneously. Fortunately, broadband and fiber optic technologies have developed rapidly in recent years, allowing this technical hurdle to be overcome. In fact, video and audio streaming accounted for over 70% of Internet traffic in the U.S. in 2015, indicating a bright future for OTT streaming.


Due to the nature of the Internet, OTT streaming faces the same issues as any other Internet-based service. Long load times, reduced speeds due to multiple connections, and improper setup of home wireless networks all affect the quality of the OTT content streaming experience.


Issues like these have driven the development of complex systems for managing streaming data. When you download a generic file like an image from the Internet, you always have to wait for the file to download as a whole. Streaming video is quite different from that.


Content is broken down into smaller fragments and delivered individually at the time you want it. The smaller data fragments allow for a fast transfer, so the content is displayed almost instantly. Occasionally, the streaming device reports "buffering", but this only means that the data transfer was interrupted for a short time.


To ensure the best possible streaming experience for most network connection types, OTT content providers package video and audio content into media containers that can be broken into small fragments. Using a time-based transmission protocol, the media container is fragmented and then continuously streamed to the end user.







There is an enormous amount of information to analyze and compare to determine if one IPTV TV system is really better than other alternatives. But that's not the goal here. Instead, we want to focus on some key areas that already make IPTV superior and future-proof.


The first and arguably most important area is the infrastructure that makes it all possible. Fiber optic technology has evolved to the point where it outperforms any other type of network. The exceptional bandwidth that fiber offers compared to copper and DBS is the main reason why IPTV is able to support "uncompressed" and "source quality" HD.


What about the number of channels? Large facilities such as hotels, where there are hundreds of guests with different preferences, benefit from the fact that the fiber network allows a IPTV TV system with a virtually infinite number of channels.


Speaking of hotels, just about any existing system in hotels TV can be upgraded with IPTV technology. Ideally, CAT5/CAT6 or fiber optic cables should be installed, as they allow for easy connection of IPTV equipment. However, an existing coax network can also be used, as it is also suitable for IP data transmission.



There is more than meets the eye



The transition from an analog system TV to a system IPTV TV is often referred to as a "digital switchover" In most cases, the issue is the picture quality on the screen TV. Is a digital image really that much better than an analog one?


In fact, it is very difficult to tell the difference when comparing an image delivered by a high-quality analog device with a "digital" image on the screen of TV. However, image quality should not be the main reason for switching to a IPTV TV system, because there are a number of other advantages that are not obvious at first glance:

Simplicity A typical IPTV headend is a very small and uncomplicated device, which translates into easy maintenance. It also consumes less power, generates less noise and heat, and requires less space than traditional analog solutions.
Solution Management Since all the devices in the IPTV TV system communicate with each other via the IP protocol, it is possible to control all aspects of the system very quickly and efficiently via a web browser and a user-friendly interface.
Diagnostics and Alarms An IPTV headend can immediately inform you of potential problems throughout the system. Let's say the signal level from the dishes gets too low or the signal from TV is disturbed in one of the guest rooms. The system will tell you exactly where and why the problem occurred, so you can intervene quickly to avoid channel failures and unhappy guests.
Stable Quality Unlike analog solutions, a digital IPTV TV system is not affected by noise, signal interference or network deviations. Once the system is set up, it consistently delivers a high-quality audio/video experience to all connected devices.
Infrastructure Solutions Wherever possible, CAT5/6 or fiber optic cables are installed to ensure optimal digital signal transmission. Analog headends are not compatible with CAT5/6 cables, but digital headends can be connected to existing coax, fiber, and CAT5/6 networks.
Added Services A IPTV TV system can offer a variety of additional features not possible with analog systems. Electronic program guide (EPG), catchup, timeshift, audio language selection, and subtitle selection are just a few examples. It is also possible to offer upselling services, so that guests in a hotel can order food via their TV screen.
High Definition (HD) Channels IPTV can transmit as many HD TV channels as needed. The IPTV headend decodes the incoming signal and distributes the content to all connected devices. This is a major advantage over analog solutions, where the HD format is not accessible due to the use of central analog decoders and modulators.
Power Consumption Even the most modern analog headends can consume about 20 watts per channel, which means 2000 watts for 100 channels. This is a big difference from an IPTV headend that consumes 300 watts but can serve 200 TV channels. Consequently, the power costs are much lower with a IPTV TV system.




Convergence of technologies



Remember when VoIP became available? Consumers around the world quickly realized the benefits of this new technology, which allowed them to access and control their phone service over the Internet. This was made possible by the convergence of two technologies: voice and data.

Now try to imagine the possibilities that could arise from the convergence of voice, data, wireless and digital television. The thought that you could control your TV with voice commands from your phone is breathtaking. Or that you could customize your TV to display up-to-date information about the weather, stocks and traffic reports, just like the Internet.

Combining TV channels and video-on-demand over Internet protocol, advanced fiber infrastructure, wireless networking and convergence of services, IPTV has potential like no other system on the market today. Whether at home, on a cruise ship or in a hotel, anywhere in the world, users can enjoy the latest content, interact and communicate at the same time - all through a single IPTV TV system.




A glimpse into the future



While most television networks still have their place in the market, the future will bring greater demand for high-quality content and integration of third-party services that currently can only be supported by IPTV. With a range of state-of-the-art IPTV products that are essential to the successful implementation of any IPTV project, Nevron is ready for the future! To make a proper decision about the Hospitality TV solution, you are invited to contact a Nevron IPTV consultant. Both Hospitality TV solutions will be presented to you. The advantages and disadvantages of both solutions will be discussed in detail so that you can fully understand them. Please email

IPTV set top box vs. Smart TV – The smarter choice?


But only recently has advancing technology made TV more than just an expensive entertainment service for guests. With the proliferation of broadband Internet connections, the Internet is becoming the predominant channel for delivering TV content. TV Not only do the devices provide a whole new experience for guests, but they also represent an amazing new opportunity for hotels to reach their customers directly and communicate their services to them.


A shorter version of the blog "SMART TV in Hospitality TV projects".


There are two ways to use the enhanced capabilities of so-called Internet Protocol Television (or IPTV) in hotels. Either through a separate device, the so-called IPTV set-top box (STB IPTV), which is connected to the TV, or through a so-called Smart TV, which already has the IPTV functionality built in.


Nevron FastBox product





IPTV set-top box vs. smart TV - The smarter choice? - Nevron Blog



At first glance, smart TV seems to be the better solution. It eliminates the need to find a place for a separate IPTV set-top box and connect it to a TV device, and is therefore easier to set up and overall more elegant. This is especially true if the TV box is to be hidden behind the TV screen, which, by increasing the required distance between the wall and the screen, compromises the aesthetic benefits of modern, increasingly thin TV devices. This makes Smart TV a compelling option especially for environments where multiple TV devices need to be installed, such as public halls, hotels, etc.




Or a set-top box based IPTV box solution?



However, the need to install and maintain multiple TV devices is exactly the case where a solution based on a dedicated IPTV set-top box might prove to be the better choice. The main reason for this is that the IPTV field is still rapidly evolving and more and more IPTV content sources are becoming available. Since virtually every smart TV manufacturer deploys its own IPTV solution, which limits the availability of IPTV content from the outset, there is a high probability that the integrated IPTV functions of a given smart TV device will be completely obsolete before its life cycle of eight to ten years is over. This leads to replacement costs that can be considerable, e.g., in hotels with several TV devices.




STB and SMART TV comparison



Features Set Top Box SMART TV
Choice of TV models any TV model Limited only to SMART models
Control over OS full remote access Limited or not available
Centralized support fully supported Limited or not available
Logs and diagnostic remotely collectible Limited or not available
DRM availability popular DRM available, easy to implement new DRM Limited to SMART TV vendor’s choice
Convergence Require more cables to connect STB to TV Fewer cables, an all-in-one device
New features any TV model Limited only to SMART models
4K support full support Limited or not available
UI performance Without noticeable delay May show delay
Ease of management Same management tools for different models Each model requires a different approach
Bug fixing STB firmware is constantly updated and easy to fix Proprietary software hard to fix or update
Integration with 3rd Party Solutions fully available Limited or not available


This sheet displays some pros and cons of STB and SMART TV client devices.


STB IPTV on the other hand, they cope much better with the developing IPTV sector. Unlike smart TVs, they are usually not tied to proprietary solutions and can therefore offer a wider range of IPTV content from the outset. And if a particular TV box becomes obsolete or stops working due to a defect, it is more convenient and much cheaper to replace just the box than to replace the entire TV device, as would be the case with smart TV.

Despite the advantages of smart TVs with integrated IPTV solutions, dedicated IPTV set-top boxes not only offer better performance in delivering IPTV content to the user, but also future-proof flexibility at a price that no existing or currently planned smart TV TV TV TV can offer.




Want to learn more about STB and Smart TV hospitality TV solutions?



To make a proper decision about the Hospitality TV solution, you are invited to contact a Nevron IPTV consultant. Both Hospitality TV solutions will be presented to you. The advantages and disadvantages of both solutions will be discussed in detail so that you can fully understand them. Please email



Learn more

SMART TV in hospitality TV projects

The original reason why TV manufacturers started offering SMART TV models is that they compete with smarter devices such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, etc. A media device that allows people to play their favourite videos from YouTube channels or Netflix movies would divert customers' attention from the regular TV that only local live channels can show TV. These channels may not match the current mood or preferences of the viewer. This is important when you start a TV project in the hospitality industry. This infographic created by Nielsen shows that users prefer to have a smart device at hand when watching TV.     Graph that shows frequency of evice usage while watching TV. Device usage graph See the full report by Nielsen here.      




    SMART TVs offer interactivity, allowing viewers of TV to access Internet-based video content, install apps, play games and use similar functions to tablets or smartphones. This creates added value for customers who want to own a SMART TV rather than a regular TV. A set-top box coupled with a TV provides a similar and in most cases a better experience than a SMART TV, which also has a special built-in module similar to an STB. From the user's point of view, the SMART TV solution looks more elegant, as you have a device without external boxes, extra cables or distortion of aesthetics and design. For installers and technicians, a single device is probably better because there are fewer outlets needed, fewer cables to connect and fewer devices to maintain. But for the technicians who maintain the IPTV system, this solution may not be as good if they want to fix some user-reported problems or add new features. Sometimes SMART TV is not so good, and you want to keep the SMART part separate from the TV panel so you can update or repair it quickly. Both types of client devices have their own advantages and disadvantages. A SMART TV is more convergent but less flexible, it is packaged, elegant and compact, while the external STB is very flexible, more compatible and easier to maintain.      


Set-top box in your service


    Nothing is easier than supplying and installing a set-top box to provide access to IPTV services. Any TV with an HDMI port can be connected and work perfectly. Installation usually does not even require a service person on site. (i.e. the customer can simply receive the STB by mail and install it themselves). The pre-configured software immediately connects to the IPTV server. Once the set-top box is installed and connected to the TV and the IP network, virtually no configuration is required to access IPTV services. For IPTV providers, using an external STB makes it very easy to build and develop their business. They can simply rent some set-top boxes from local stores or sell them online with courier delivery. Customers just need to connect the STB to a local network or ISP to access the IPTV services offered by that network or ISP. With simple instructions, they can easily do this themselves. The same is true for OTT: a global service can be provided if the STB is connected to the Internet and has an active service subscription to watch live TV, video-on-demand and other OTT services. SMART TV is not as flexible here, as the models are different and many proprietary platforms are used in SMART TV devices, which usually present enough obstacles for developers. See the "Comparison" tab for some differences between STB and SMART TV clients.    


STB and SMART TV comparison


Feature Set Top Box SMART TV
Choice of TV models any TV model Limited only to SMART models
Control over OS full remote access Limited or not available
Centralized support fully supported Limited or not available
Logs and diagnostic remotely collectible Limited or not available
DRM availability popular DRM available, easy to implement new DRM Limited to SMART TV vendor’s choice
Convergence Require more cables to connect STB to TV Fewer cables, an all-in-one device
New features any TV model Limited only to SMART models
4K support full support Limited or not available
UI performance Without noticeable delay May show delay
Ease of management Same management tools for different models Each model requires a different approach
Bug fixing STB firmware is constantly updated and easy to fix Proprietary software hard to fix or update
Integration with 3rd Party Solutions fully available Limited or not available


This sheet displays some pros and cons of STB and SMART TV client devices.       An external STB is not free of problems. But thanks to open and widely available platforms, hardware and technologies used in external STBs, such problems can be fixed much more easily and quickly. This provides the ideal foundation to start developing a client application right away. A SMART TV client application typically operates in a proprietary environment, on very specific hardware, and is bound by rules and policies set by the vendor SMART TV. Typically, vendors are very strict with the restrictions and create many obstacles for developers, making SMART TV a poor choice for projects where customization and integration are important.      


Why hospitality TV is better with STB


With an STB, it is much easier to achieve a higher level of customization. This is one good reason why a Hospitality TV project is better implemented with an STB than with an SMART TV. Integration of property management systems is also a major advantage of an STB client. A set-top box comes with a remote control adapted to the STB's UI. This allows intuitive, easy control of IPTV services on the TV screen without compromise or inconvenience. With a SMART TV, developers have to deal with buttons that are already arranged on the remote controls of the particular model of SMART TV. This sometimes results in less convenience and a distorted user experience.  

Nevron FastBox product.


The availability of UI customizations and integration with PMS makes STB an ideal choice for Hospitality TV projects.   IPTV system providers can choose from remote controls available on the market or even design and manufacture their own remote controls that fully comply with the original idea of UI, expressed by the developers of the system. All kinds of remote controls can be found on the market, such as a full QWERTY layout, G-sensor and accelerometer controlled joysticks, trackballs, trackpads, sensor pads, buttons with light effects and many other function-enhancing controls. A SMART TV does not have this freedom of choice. The UI is a proprietary design, and applications must be created within strict guidelines dictated by the remote's button layout, the specifics of the platform, and the graphical interface of the SMART TV model used.      




    It's difficult to make a solid recommendation on which client device to use, as it really depends on the goals and budget of the project. For luxury projects such as five-star hotels or cruise ships, the STB provides a better user experience and allows the technology to be kept up to date. For small projects and low budgets, a SMART TV may be a better and sometimes the only available option.


If you bought a smart TV a couple of years ago chances are its interface, apps, and capabilities, not to mention its response time, seem dated by comparison to a $99 box. Most smart TV platforms are updated only during the year they were launched, if then, and afterward age as quickly as any technology.

-Geoffrey MorrisonCNET (Read the full CNET article here.) But for most projects, it is recommended to consider an external STB, especially as it is possible to install them on the back of the TV and power up from PoE. This does not require the use of an additional power outlet for the STB      


What about the cables?


    All this allows the installation and use of an external set-top box without compromising the aesthetics of the TV panel, as was originally planned. In addition, the STB can be quickly replaced or the firmware updated. Even the remote control of the STB can be used to control the basic functions of TV (e.g. power on/off and volume/mute), so the user will never find out if an external STB is actually connected to TV. At the same time, the user experience is guaranteed to be better than SMART TV. For the technicians maintaining the IPTV system, an external STB is easier to maintain than a proprietary module installed in a SMART TV.      


Interested to find out more about STB and smart TV hospitality TV solutions?


    In order to make a proper decision about which Hospitality TV Solution to choose you are invited to get in touch with Nevron IPTV consultant. Both Hospitality TV Solutions will be presented to you. The pros and cons of both Solutions will be discussed in-depth in order for you to fully understand them. Please write an email to