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BitTorrent Live Video Service Closing in Weeks, Says Report

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After a long buildup, it appears BitTorrent Live is already going away. According to an unconfirmed report on Variety, BitTorrent live will close "in the coming weeks." The article says BitTorrent attempted to turn its live video service into a separate company, but was unable to raise funds. A request to BitTorrent's press team was not immediately answered.

BitTorrent Live launched on Apple TV in May 2016, as an app that provided access to a dozen channels including One World Sports, Heroes TV, and Clubbing TV. In an interview with StreamingMedia.com at the time, Erik Schwartz, vice president of media for BitTorrent, said big broadcasters were interested in the service, and BitTorrent Live would add "a lot more channels over the next 6 months to a year.” At present, the service offers 15 free channels, including NASA TV, NASA UHD, and NHK World TV, as well as two subscription news packs.

Creating a peer-to-peer low-latency live video service had been a pet project of BitTorrent creator Bram Cohen for years, so this news puts an end to a long development effort. StreamingMedia.com spoke to Cohen in October 2010, when he felt he was close to solving the latency and packet loss issues that stood in his way.

The live service's 10-person team will leave BitTorrent by the end of this week, Variety reports. There's no word on if BitTorrent or an outside company has plans for the P2P live technology.

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