The technology works by allowing files to be cut up into chunks so that they can be distributed by many file sharers, cutting down on the time it takes to transfer a file. The more people who share the files, the faster the process: A popular movie can take minutes instead of hours to download.Imagine how much cheaper it would be, if you had instructional videos, to distribute that multimedia content via Bittorrent instead of shipping out DVDs to your customers or paying huge bandwidth charges for hosting gigabytes of data on a web or ftp site. Just think of the applications!
With an estimated 45 million users, Bittorrent is a force to be reckoned with. Bittorrent usage accounted for 30% of worldwide Internet traffic at the end of last year (source: CacheLogic). Bittorrent is a disruptive technology, just like Napster was. Right now it’s mostly used for distributing copyrighted material illegally — television episodes, movies, etc. But it has a lot of potential in respectable areas of business. And some VCs seem to agree, as BusinessWeek reports that BitTorrent (the company) has just raised $8.75 million. Here’s how the technology works, as BusinessWeek described it:
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