BitTorrent launches new streaming service offering more control to artists

BitTorrent Now offers a new alternative for artists looking to stream their music.

BitTorrent has announced the launch of BitTorrent Now, a new ad-supported streaming version of its existing BitTorrent Bundle platform.

BitTorrent Now is being billed by the software company as a relaunched version of the Bundle platform, which launched in 2013 as a way for artists to sell digital download packages and choose what they charge for them.

Thom Yorke has been one of the most high-profile adopters of the technology, using it to sell his 2014 solo album Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes.

The updated BitTorrent Now has added a new revenue stream for artists and content creators with an ad-supported streaming option capable of hosting music and video. Artists will get to keep 70% of all ad revenue.

The service has also added apps for Android, iOS and Apple TV alongside the existing desktop version. They include features like shuffle, the ability to save content for later and sync across all devices.

The service doesn’t seem to be intended as a competitor to Spotify or Apple Music, but a way for artists to stream their work through a more direct channel, negating the big streaming platforms’ royalty chain.

A more likely competitor to BitTorrent Bundle would be Bandcamp: both platforms allow artists to sell content direct, but there’s no way for anyone to claim streaming revenue from Bandcamp if a listener hasn’t purchased the music in question.

BitTorrent Now is soft launching today (June 23) with premieres from a number of artists. Initial partners include Fool’s Gold Records and Ex Machina studio A24. The option to stream content will be rolled out to everyone later this year.

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