Everybody is on the cloud these days, from Apple to Google. Although it is arguable about the magnitude of success the cloud storage services have achieved, it is beyond doubt that Dropbox rules cloud world. The latest player joining this cloud bandwagon is BitTorrent.
BitTorrent’s new service, Share is meant for the same purpose as other free cloud storage options but with a twist. It wants to make use of the P2P technology in conjunction with the cloud storage, so that the user allocates a certain portion of their local disk space and bandwidth to speed up the sharing of files. It further also boasts of unlimited storage for free.
For those who want to try it, find the download link at the end, though we don’t recommend using it. Why? Continue reading.
The User Interface
- The software is actually super slim, a miniscule of 565KB and has a nice, minimal interface. Sadly that is the only impressive thing about this app as of now.
- Signing up surprisingly didn’t even require email verification which is really lousy and not welcome considering how easily you can fool around with an email id.
- There is nothing much more to say about the app.
The website mentions some cute words like “Super Fast Downloads”, “Easy 1-2-3 Sharing”, “Fun and Social” but they all are Completely crap! At-least for now.
After several failed attempts to share both large and small files to my alternate email address, the upload speed was pathetically slow (as low as 30 B/s!). However, this is expected due to the alpha stage and almost no seeders due to limited usage.
Share vs. Dropbox – The Technology Inside
Share relies on the cloud, taking advantage of Amazon’s EC2 and S3 service, but it is only for caching the files and not actually storing it permanently, as Gigaom says. Once the file is actually shared by sufficient number of peers, the file is moved and decentralized to the users local storage.
This idea sounds brilliant at the first time for saving precious cloud storage, but as we all know P2P technology can not be always reliable, and if there are no actual seeders of a file then the file may not be shared.
On the other hand, Dropbox is fully based on the cloud (again, using Amazon’s S3) providing users a reliable file storage service. With cool technologies under the hood like Delta Encoding, which uploads only the changes made to the file instead of the entire file all over again and a huge set of available extensions and plugins which further make Dropbox hard to beat.
Though BitTorrent promises that there will always be a cloud cache for every file, as the number of users increase, we can not always expect the cloud cache to be present in order to save Cloud space.
Waiting for hours for getting the file moving in Share, while it would just work in Dropbox, the path ahead for Share is surely going to be tough unless it thinks of an amazing solution.
Also, BitTorrent might not have great reputation with corporate environments due to illegal torrent contents for which it’s mostly used for. In my opinion, BitTorrent has survived the competition in the Torrent space quite well but it may not get so lucky when competing with Dropbox and other cloud storage biggies.
Download: Share (Alpha)