BBC embraces peer-to-peer downloading

The P2P-Next project is a pan-European conglomerate of 21 industrial partners, including the BBC and the European Broadcasting Union and other research groups, examining the potential uses of peer-to-peer (P2P) technology for internet television of the future.

P2P-Next has recently received a €14 million grant from the European Union and issued a statement earlier today to inform us that:

“The P2P-Next project will run over four years, and plans to conduct a large-scale technical trial of new media applications running on a wide range of consumer devices. If successful, this ambitious project could create a platform that would enable audiences to stream and interact with live content via a PC or set top box.

"In addition, it is our intention to allow audiences to build communities around their favourite content via a fully personalized system.”

P2P is here to stay

The project will be run on an open-source basis and the tech could potentially be built into video-on-demand (VOD) services and used to distribute TV coverage of major broadcasting events.

The team behind the social BitTorrent client Tribler is responsible for the core P2P technology for the P2P-Next project.

“This co-operation with both the British and German public broadcasters indicates that P2P is here to stay. We welcome the decision of the European Union to award this proposal around P2P. This means that Europe can expand its roughly two-year lead in this important area,” Tribler’s Johan Pouwelse told website TorrentFreak.

“Tribler serves as a testing ground for several world-first innovations. It serves as a living lab for P2P research. Key to our endeavour is an academically pure architecture: no central servers exist in Tribler in combination with being backwards compatible with BitTorrent,” Pouwelse added.

Adam Hartley