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BitTorrent lands new hardware deals

Company's peer-to-peer technology will be included in routers and storage devices, bolstering BitTorrent's credibility.

Greg Sandoval Former Staff writer
Greg Sandoval covers media and digital entertainment for CNET News. Based in New York, Sandoval is a former reporter for The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. E-mail Greg, or follow him on Twitter at @sandoCNET.
Greg Sandoval
Three hardware manufacturers will embed file-sharing software BitTorrent into their consumer products.

Asus, Planex and Qnap will include BitTorrent's peer-to-peer technology in products such as wireless routers, media servers and network storage devices, BitTorrent said in a statement Monday. Two of the devices made by Asus can be configured to download digital files via BitTorrent without the use of a PC.

"These are the places where people will store their media in the future," said Ashwin Navin, BitTorrent's co-founder. "People don't want files to clutter their home PCs. Our technology working with these devices allows an entire family to share a jukebox."

Long considered a tool for Internet music pirates, BitTorrent is one of the fastest methods available to download large digital files such as video.

Consumer-electronics makers are looking to stake out territory in the "digital living room." BitTorrent presents itself as an efficient way to help transfer music, video and other media within a home network.

Meanwhile, BitTorrent has continued to postpone the opening of the company's video-on-demand store. In May, BitTorrent announced a groundbreaking deal to distribute movies over the Web for Warner Bros. Entertainment Group.

Warner Bros. became the first studio to embrace BitTorrent's technology, once feared by many in Hollywood because it was used for illegal file sharing.

A company spokeswoman said the BitTorrent video store may not open online until late this year or early 2007 as it continues to boost the number of movie titles in stock.