In computer networking
transmission is the sending of information packets
to a single destination. The term "unicast" is formed in analogy to the word "broadcast
" which means transmitting to all destinations. Another method, multicasting
, is similar to broadcasting, but implemented in more efficient manner. When multicasting is unavailable, unicasting the exact same content to many users can be costly. Internet radio
stations may have high bandwidth costs because of this.
These terms are also used by streaming content providers' services. Unicast servers provide a stream to a single user at a time, while multicast servers can support a larger audience by serving content simultaneously to multiple users.