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New app streams torrent files to AppleTV

As regular followers of the ProPrivacy blog will know, we are big fans of the amazingly elegant and functional ‘Netflix for pirates’ app, Popcorn Time. Since the original’s inception and subsequent demise, a number of forks have been developed (including one dedicated to streaming music instead of video content), but they have all more or less follow the design of the original.

A new app, called TorrenTV not only looks radically different, but introduces a powerful new feature - just drag and drop a movie .torrent magnet link from any torrent site into the app Window, and it will immediately start to stream the movie to a nearby AppleTV (local files of movies you have already downloaded can also be streamed to an AppleTV in this way). Developer Carlos explained to Torrentfreak,

Popcorn Time is beautiful in code and in looks but I wanted to do two things that PopcornTime didn’t allow me, watch movies directly on my TV and add new torrents which Popcorn Time doesn’t have yet.

At present TorrenTV only streams to AppleTV (local play on a computer screen is not supported), but support for Google Chromecast and Roku is on the way. Unfortunately we don’t have an AppleTV to hand to test the program, but TorrentFreak commentators say it works well (and when Chromecast support is available we will update this article with our test results).

Like Popcorn Time (on whose code the app is based), TorrenTV is free and open source. Because no movies are indexed (users must search torrent sites themselves to find content) the devs hope it will not be taken down by the MPAA, although we think this is a rather fanciful hope - when Apple sees this it go ballistic!

TorrenTV is available for OSX, Windows and Linux machines, and can be downloaded from here. Remember, streaming torrent files looks just like downloading them to an outside observer, so always protect yourself by using a P2P-friendly VPN!

Written by: Douglas Crawford

Has worked for almost six years as senior staff writer and resident tech and VPN industry expert at ProPrivacy.com. Widely quoted on issues relating cybersecurity and digital privacy in the UK national press (The Independent & Daily Mail Online) and international technology publications such as Ars Technica.

5 Comments

roman
on July 29, 2014
Reply
Could you explain this: How ca one use torren.tv and a VPN service? I just discovered BTguard and its easy to implement within VUZE. How can people be safe when using torrentv?
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Douglas Crawford replied to roman
on July 29, 2014
Reply
Hi roman, When you use a VPN service you create an encrypted tunnel between your computer and a VPN server. All traffic in and out of your computer (including BitTorrent traffic) is therefore encrypted so that nto even your ISP (and possibly not even the NSA) can 'see' what you have been getting up to on the internet. Traffic between the VPN server and the internet is unencrypted, but the VPN server acts as a proxy, so anyone tracing your torrent usage will see its IP address, not yours. In theory your VPN provider can link your internet activity to your real IP, which is why it is important to choose a provider who keeps minimal logs, and who is able and willing to reject DMCA notices (many VPN providers exist almost entirely for this purpose).
roman replied to Douglas Crawford
on July 29, 2014
Reply
Thanks Douglas. But what about Torren.tv? How do you set up a VPN to work with torren.tv downloads? Maybe you can point us to the answer. We look forward to your articles in our class. You are awesome
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Douglas Crawford replied to roman
on July 29, 2014
Reply
Hi roman, Thanks! When using VPN all your computer internet traffic goes through the VPN tunnel, so just as with downloading using a regular BitTorrent client, you simply connect to the VPN sever before dropping a torrent link into TorrenTV, and you will be protected... It has just occurred to me, however, that you may be unable to connect to the AppleTV if you are running VPN (please remember that I do not have an AppleTV to test this on). In this case you could maybe run VPN on a router both devices are connected to, but I am not sure about this. If not, then you will have to download the movie first (using VPN and regular BitTorrent program), and then stream it to the AppleTV using TorrenTV. Unfortunately TorrenTV is brand new, so no documentation is available for it (that we are aware of).
roman replied to Douglas Crawford
on July 29, 2014
Reply
Thank you for your detailed response.
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