Has Apple finally begun to lift its ban on BitTorrent apps? Since Apple first founded the App store, the tech giant has had a standing ban on any apps related to the BitTorrent file-sharing protocol. On Friday, however, two new BitTorrent-related apps were available in the App Store, possibly a sign that Apple is relaxing its restrictions on BitTorrent-related content.
According to Apple, BitTorrent-related apps were not allowed in the App Store "because this category of applications is often used for the purpose of infringing third-party rights," according to TorrentFreak.
While Apple has rejected countless apps over the years for simply mentioning BitTorrent, the two new apps to appear in the App Store allow users to manage their torrent downloads on their phones, TorrentFreak reported Friday.
One app, Conttrol, lets users remotely access their downloads on BitTorrent and uTorrent from their mobile phones, letting users stop, start, add, or delete torrents on their desktop computers no matter where they are in the world.
"Currently the app supports connections to uTorrent and BitTorrent clients, but there are future plans to support Transmission on the Mac, as well as planned development of a native iPad version," Conttrol developer Craig Donnelly told TorrentFreak.
The other app, Transmission RPC, does largely the same thing for the less-popular Transmission client. Neither app allows users to make downloads to their iPhones or iPads.
This week, a popular BitTorrent client, uTorrent, released its own app into the Android Marketplace. The uTorrent app allows users to access and download torrents directly to their Android smartphones and tablets. The uTorrent service currently boasts 150 million or so active users per month, and now, with smartphones, it is expanding the business to an avenue that's been relatively underserved in the torrent world, according to TorrentFreak.
The uTorrent app was released on Wednesday and is expected by many to capitalize on the increasing reliance people have on their smartphones as well as their growing willingness to illegally download music, movies, and other media to their devices. It will also be available on Android tablets, something that isn't expected to happen yet for the iPad.