Talking tech since 2003

Not too long ago, you had to be a techno-wizard to engage in piracy. The act usually involved paying for access to Usenet’s servers, participating in complicated Newsgroups, and figuring out how to download the goods – all with usually painfully slow download feeds. All that began to change as time marched on and pirates transitioned to BitTorrent as their primary method of piracy. Suddenly, no subscriptions were needed, no Newsgroups to be found – just Google for a torrent file, click download, hope that there are enough seeders to complete the download and at a decent speed, and enjoy. But in today’s world, where convenience and speed are everything, even this is too cumbersome, too slow, for the average consumer. That’s where Popcorn Time, a new application for Mac, Linux, and Windows comes in.

Popcorn Time allows you to easily and quickly locate and stream movies from BitTorrent files already floating around the web, all nearly instantaneously. This is all done using a gorgeous (and simple) user interface that shares a great resemblance to some of the industry’s leading streaming services, including Apple’s iTunes Store and Netflix.

Simply search for the movie you want to watch or browse through Popcorn Time’s built in genre recommendations, click the poster representing the movie of your choice, and click play, watching as your movie buffers and begins to play in seconds, finding and downloading the necessary movie data from a torrent file located on YTS, a popular BitTorrent index.


The real kicker here, however, isn’t that this concept works – it’s how amazingly well it works. Movies streaming on Popcorn Time load in mere seconds, and the quality of both the picture and the audio are all outstanding, easily rivaling what you would find on more legitimate channels such as Netflix. Most movies are able to be streamed in both 720p HD and 1080p HD, and titles are available with optional subtitle support in a wide range of languages.

The most of thing to remember, however, is that despite how easy Popcorn Time makes movie piracy it’s still very, very much illegal. None of this is sponsored or endorsed by the movie industry, and neither the publishers nor anybody involved in the production of these movies ever see a cent from the app – and that’s absolutely wrong, no matter which way you slice it. Despite that fact, Popcorn Time designer Sebastian isn’t concerned. In an interview with TorrentFreak, the designer says that he doesn’t expect any legal issues as the application itself doesn’t host any movie files, but merely links to them.  However, even though that is the case, sites have been targeted with lawsuits (and even criminal action) for helping facilitate massive copyright infringement (think ThePirateBay) so I’m not sure how solid a legal ground he is standing on.

As for why he built the app? “We hate that we don’t have the chance to watch some movies at home.” Sebastian told TorrentFreak. “Popcorn Time is an experiment to show that you can do something better for the users, and that you can do it with BitTorrent.”

Popcorn Time is available as a free, open source application for Mac, Linux, and Windows. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can give it a whirl by heading on over to their website and clicking the big “Download Now” button.

Disclaimer: BestTechie does not endorse piracy in any way, shape, or form. Use Popcorn Time at your own risk. If you like the content, please consider purchasing it at your local retailer or online.

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