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A couple of years ago, when Popcorn Time exploded onto the scene, it seemed unstoppable. Billed as the “Netflix you always wanted”, the service crawled through torrent sites, saving you the usual hassle of having to wade through sketchy torrent sites and then waiting for the file to finish downloading. Under pressure from the MPAA, it was taken down by its original developers in March 2014. Since then there have been a number of attempts by the developer community to fork it in new and interesting ways.
The latest of these bids, by an anonymous group of coders, sees the launch of Popcorn Time Online — a version of the service which promises to stay up a lot longer than its predecessors.
According to Popcorn Time Online’s developers, that’s because it includes the new Torrents Time technology. This technology, they say, means one can “play and stream almost every video format, smoothly and with stunning quality”.
The technology behind Torrent Time also apparently means that a plain single html file could contain all current Popcorn Time’s features. This is a data-URL, independent of any centralised domain, which contains everything one needs to use Popcorn Time.
That said, the developers are adamant that they’ll maintain anonymity. “By sticking to anonymity,” they say, “we are not cowards who hide from righteous content monopolies, but content freedom fighters who respect the law but do not trust the law enforcers to play the law fair”.
Popcorn Time Online can be accessed via any browser and will officially launch on 4 February.