BitTorrent Makes Deal with Devil, Video Downloads to Ensue

Peer-to-peer software developer BitTorrent, Inc. must be getting nervous, going all legal-like on us with a video downloading deal with 20th Century Fox, Paramount, Lionsgate, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, MTV, Palm Pictures, G4, Kadokawa and Stars Media.

That's right, starting in February of next year you'll be able to download-to-own (DTO) films and TV shows, or rent films on a video on-demand (VOD) basis from those studios in addition to the already agreed-upon Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, Egami Media, Hart Sharp, Koch Entertainment and The Orchard.

Take a look at a bit of told-ya-so ranting and partial list of the films that will be available:


Finally, Hollywood studios get their heads out of the sand and realize that unless they make deals for movie downloads, the downloads will happen anyway. Of course, we're assuming that none of these movies will be available in HDTV formats yet, where the conventional wisdom says that those films are much too big for download. Sure, maybe 1080p films are too bulky, but it's amazing what compression can do these days, especially over fat pipes.

Who knows what price the studios will attempt to charge for this content, but it better be cheap or this idea will tank.

And hey, does this have anything to do with Apple's upcoming iTV video distribution hardware that was teased a few months ago? Could that be BitTorrent equipped, too?

Through these new partnerships, BitTorrent customers will be able to select from a variety of popular film titles from 20th Century Fox, Kadokawa, Lionsgate, Palm, Paramount and Starz Media such as "X-Men The Last Stand," "Ringu," "Saw III," "13 Tzameti," "Mission: Impossible III," and "Ghost in the Shell." TV programming will include hits like "Attack of the Show" from G4; "24" and "Prison Break" from 20th Century Fox; "City of Men" from Palm; "Laguna Beach" and "Celebrity Deathmatch" from MTV: Music Television; Emmy and Peabody-Award winning "South Park" and "Chappelle's Show" from COMEDY CENTRAL; "Hogan Knows Best" from VH1; "SpongeBob SquarePants" and "Avatar: The Last Airbender" from Nickelodeon; and "Skyland" from Nicktoons Network.

Press Release [BitTorrent Inc., via CrunchGear]