Warner Bros. associates with BitTorrent to distribute movies, TV shows

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MUMBAI: Warner Bros. will distribute its films and television shows over the internet using peer-to-peer technology developed by BitTorrent. The studio will also sell permanent copies of films and TV shows online that can be burned to a backup DVD, although the copy will only play on the computer used to download the film and not on standard DVD players.

The company is planning to kick off the new initiative within six months and the service could be priced as low as $1. According to BitTorrent, movies will be sold for about the price of buying a DVD.

"If we can convert 5, 10, 15 per cent of the peer-to-peer users that have been obtaining our product from illegitimate sources to becoming legitimate buyers of our product, that has the potential of a huge impact on our industry and our economics," Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group president Kevin Tsujihara has been quoted in media reports as saying.

BitTorrent uses a technique called "file swarming" to distribute large files. Rather than download a single large file from one central computer, BitTorrent assembles files from separate bits of data downloaded from other computer users across the Internet.

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