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Monday, February 26, 2007

BitTorrent Enters Legit Movie Biz

BitTorrent finally unveiled its legal video download service today, offering 5,000 movies, games, TV shows and music videos. The company is trying to stay one step ahead of peer-to-peer competitor Joost, which has been getting lots of buzz as the "future of movie downloads."

The BitTorrent Entertainment Network has Warner Bros., Paramount and MGM on board, which already puts them ahead of Apple's iTunes in video content. BitTorrent has 80 million users in the U.S., according to the San Francisco Chronicle, but as Napster knows, turning free users into paying customers can be a challenge.

BitTorrent offers rentals that must be watched within 24 hours of being initiated, and the price (between $2.99 and $3.99) makes the company competitive with Amazon, Wal-Mart, Apple, et al. The market will likely support only a few major players, so expect 2007 to be the year of growth, followed by a rapid shakeout.

By John Gartner at 01:01 PM | Comments (0)

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