If you’ve ever wondered about the difference between web casting and live streaming, you are in good company.

A combination of new media, technological terms and hybrid words has fueled misunderstanding. Let’s clear it up for you right now.


Streaming is a method of transmitting or receiving data continuously over a computer network. Usually associated with Netflix, YouTube and Spotify, it’s the way all of us watch pre-recorded video or music online today. Content loads as you watch it, via the internet, instead of being stored on your device.

Live Streaming

Live streaming is when the content being streamed is not pre-recorded, but filmed as it’s happening. We capture the footage and stream it live via the internet. This can be done from your mobile phone or webcam through social media, or on a full production level with multiple cameras and live mixing.


Webcasting is like traditional broadcasting, distributing by streaming over the internet. It follows a one-to-many format, and requires the use of special equipment. Compared to traditional broadcasting, webcasts are much more accessible and affordable to companies because they can be published anywhere online.

Webcasts can consist of live or pre-recorded video. We can watch a live webcast after the live event is over, when it becomes available on-demand.


On-demand is a term coined in the last 20 years as we’ve seen a rise in streaming. It essentially means that we can watch pre-recorded content whenever we like. Unlike traditional television and radio, which we can only watch as it is being broadcast, we can tap into streamed content on any device at a time that’s convenient for us.

Video Conferencing

This is something many people often confuse with webcasting or webinars due to terms such as ‘live video’ and ‘conferencing’ which cross over between platforms yet have completely different meanings depending on where we apply them.

The simplest form of video calling is now something billions of people all over the world use thanks to Apple’s facetime. Most offices also have some kind of video conferencing capability whether it be webcams in the boardroom or online programs for one-to-one meetings.

Video conferencing is always in real-time, and is a one-to-one format e.g. you specifically choose to engage with a small number of people by directly reaching out to them. The content is not available afterwards.

This article contains selected sections from a more detailed article from Bristish colleagues at VisAir. Go check it out if you are thirsting for more details. Cheers!