The most popular Popcorn Time fork is back. Four months after PopcornTime.io was taken offline after legal pressure from the Motion Picture Association of America the app has returned, with users noticing a new software update, known as “Hail Hydra,” is available for download.
PopcornTime.io does not appear to be available again, since an MPAA lawsuit led to a staff exodus and eventual shutdown in October. But existing versions of the Popcorn Time app, which users downloaded from PopcornTime.io before its fall, have started to receive new updates that makes the app operational again, TorrentFreak reported Thursday.
It's not clear who is behind the update, though TorrentFreak reports that the update appears to contain much of the same code used in Butter, a Popcorn Time offshoot that's reportedly being developed by much of the same staff who fled PopcornTime.io.
It's not clear if the Hail Hydra update is safe to download.
“Most of our old teammates have left the ship to focus on a new technology, they called it Butter, and we use their platform as a base to make Popcorn Time,” Popcorn Time administrators said in a statement Wednesday. “The bonus is that we, as well as other existing and future projects, will indirectly profit from all the changes brought in Butter.”
Butter is an open source Popcorn Time offshoot that, while still in development, aims to enable developers who are not affiliated with movie piracy in anyway to contribute to new apps. It all stems from the mentality that movies, TV shows and other copyrighted media content should be free and accessible to all users outside the U.S.
It's an argument that has yet to convince the MPAA, international law enforcement, Internet Service Providers, courts or much of the public who pays for media content.
Popcorn Time has also been haunted by security problems, with multiple instances of hackers using Popcorn Time's massive base of users to spread malicious software.
“The last four months have been chaotic,” said the statement Wednesday. “We've seen some forks keeping up the good work and others who just wanted to trap users into a trap of adwares and malwares.”