Home > bittorrent, internet, software, uk > The EU backs bittorrent

The EU backs bittorrent

The EU have invested $22 million in the development of an open-source bitTorrent client. The BBC are one of the largest groups involved in the effort, planning to use the new client to stream TV programs. According to the article on Torrent Freak more than half of all bittorrent users are downloading TV episodes and the broadcast companies are waking up to the this.

There’s just one problem with this. A large amount of ISP’s are currently limiting the bandwidth available for bittorrent on their network. Virgin media have had a download cap in place for a while, and also appear to be limiting bittorrent in other ways. If I use bittorrent all the other internet traffic slows down, even if the torrent is only using 500Kb/s out of my theoretical 2,500Kb/s maximum download speed. So much for unlimited internet.

At a time when software like Tribler is appearing to make it easier to find and download bittorrent content, we may end up not being able to use it at all. Just remember that bittorrent users are selfish and inconsiderate (I know that’s crazy, but it’s Virgin Media’s view). Bear in mind that this is an unlimited service they’re talking about.

The problem here is that bittorrent is become a standard for sharing content. If ISP’s don’t get on board and give their customers what they want they risk losing out. ISP’s who plan ahead and invest in equipment that can handle the demand will take the customers. Instead of demonising the ‘greedy users’, why not stop spouting marketing crap and give us what we pay for?

  1. February 23, 2008 at 11:59 am

    Virgin don’t have any download caps .

  2. basshead
    February 23, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    Virgin Media cap your download speed (on The 20Mbit XL broadband) at 5Megabit/second if you hit 3Gigabytes downloaded between 4pm and midnight. That’s a download cap.
    To put this in perspective, a 20Megabit connection can download at a maximum of 2.5Megabytes/second. 3Gigabytes would take 20 minutes to download. You don’t get the maximum speed so it usually takes 30 minutes.
    This means if I use my unlimited connection at its full speed for half an hour between 4pm and midnight the download speed will be cut to 25% of maximum. Since a 20Megabit connection could download 72Gigabytes in eight hours the cap reduces this to just under 20Gigabytes. That’s definitely a download cap.
    I download Linux distributions to play with which are often several Gigabytes in size. I would never hit 20Gigabytes in a day let alone eight hours, but am still penalised for using my £37 a month internet connection at a fraction of its capacity.

  1. February 23, 2008 at 10:13 am

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