Topics Altcoins
Bybit Learn
Bybit Learn
Intermediate
Jul 22, 2022

What Is BitTorrent (BTT): Sharing Files The Decentralized Way

Before Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video ruled the entertainment space, there was BitTorrent. Created in 2001 by American programmer Bram Cohen, BitTorrent allowed the peer-to-peer sharing and downloading of large files on the web.

Unlike other internet protocols at the time, BitTorrent had faster transmission rates and permitted the simultaneous downloading of files. By 2005, studies showed that BitTorrent led the P2P platforms which accounted for over 70% of internet traffic at the time.

However, despite ruling the internet world, BitTorrent faced serious challenges such as increased piracy, privacy breaches, content unavailability and slow internet speeds that led to inconsistencies when downloading.

Additionally, BitTorrent faced serious challenges in monetizing the platform. Despite its game-changing technology, there seemed to be no viable business model to turn the innovation into a money-making enterprise.

Enter Tron.

In 2018, the Tron Foundation — led by its founder, Justin Sun — acquired BitTorrent with the vision of decentralizing its services. Following the multi-million dollar acquisition, Tron introduced BitTorrent Token (BTT) in 2019, which was a cryptocurrency designed to provide incentives to torrenting network users.

Let’s explore how shifting from traditional file storage systems to blockchain has been for BitTorrent. Will the use of the BTT token be the magic that transforms BitTorrent into a money mint? Let’s find out.

What Is BitTorrent Token (BTT)?

BitTorrent Token (BTT) is a TRC-20 utility token built on the Tron blockchain, designed to integrate Web 3.0 technology into torrenting. The BitTorrent team believes that blockchain technology will facilitate a decentralized torrent platform that provides a bridge between content creators and viewers, without the need for intermediaries.

Further, the use of BTT cryptocurrency resonates with the torrenting community’s need for uncensored sharing of content in an open and rewarding way. Tron’s delegated proof of stake (DPoS) consensus mechanism and peer-to-peer (P2P) technology provide the requisite infrastructure to do exactly that.

The strategic merger between Tron and BitTorrent’s file sharing Protocol via BTT will also assist the mass adoption of blockchain. The BitTorrent P2P platform has millions of active users who are ripe for using the decentralized services provided by the Tron ecosystem. Ultimately, this significant traffic from BitTorrent will help Tron’s scalability in using BTT tokens.

How Does BitTorrent Token Work?

BTT tokens work by merging the P2P file-sharing solutions provided by BitTorrent as a protocol, and Tron as a TRC-20 token. As an internet communication protocol, BitTorrent uses its software to allow the distribution of large files such as movies, videos, games and other digital content by allowing users to download them as small files.

However, since users may receive a single file from multiple providers, there’s the challenge of server and network congestion. That said, BTT seeks to improve BitTorrent's distributed network by providing the incentives necessary to increase efficiency.

Since Tron is already a decentralized peer-to-peer payment platform, BTT will be the currency used to facilitate micropayments on BitTorrent. BitTorrent employs an on-chain/off-chain approach in which all BTT transactions are first made in a private ledger then transferred to be recorded on Tron’s blockchain which ensures transparency and accountability.

BitTorrent has also launched its own blockchain in December 2021, the BitTorrent Chain (BTTC). It is the world’s first heterogeneous cross-chain interoperability protocol, and runs on the proof of stake (PoS) mechanism, using sidechains for scaling of smart contracts. It supports the seamless transfer of assets between multiple chains at a low cost, such as Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain (BSC), and of course, Tron. BTT is the native coin that drives the BTTC, and is used to pay for gas, staking, and voting.

BitTorrent Chain (BTTC) DApp ecosystem

Source: Bt.io

What Makes BitTorrent Unique?

Since BitTorrent software hit the market, it’s caught the attention of web users globally. With huge clients such as µTorrent, the BitTorrent protocol remains a dependable file-sharing system. Using a torrent platform ensures faster downloads, even of large data, without the need for expensive server equipment.

BitTorrent now has premium paid services for torrent downloaders that ensure a safer torrenting experience. As premium clients, users can enjoy features such as threat protection with automatic scanning before a download, detailed torrent information, and a VPN for one year.

Some of the unique attributes of BitTorrent include:

BitTorrent Speed

An Image of BitTorrent Speed

Source: BitTorrent

As a protocol, BitTorrent has been struggling with architectural inadequacies that have severely affected “swarms” (all the peers sharing a file), who have struggled with an imbalance between the upload and download speeds. Once a download is complete, a torrent downloader isn’t incentivized to seed content for other downloaders.

Consequently, BitTorrent launched BitTorrent Speed for its clients to offer seeders BTT as a reward for prolonged seeding, even after a download is complete. The product ensures faster download speeds, since the users have an incentive to share their bandwidth. As a result, there are fewer “swarm deaths,” which has been a perennial problem on BitTorrent.

BitTorrent Speed presents clients with various features. First, the users can create a local BitTorrent wallet, or import an existing one that’s compatible with Tron’s blockchain. Secondly, as an incentive, new users are eligible for a 50 BTT airdrop. Lastly, CAPTCHA integration is added within the Airdrop flow as a security measure against bots.

BitTorrent File System

An image of BTFS architecture

Source: BTFS

BitTorrent File System (BTFS) is the company’s innovative file sharing and storage system. Through decentralization, BTFS seeks to address the challenges faced by centralized traditional file storage systems, such as censorship, blown-up maintenance costs and vendor lock-in effect.

Driven by smart contracts, BTFS has a complex interplay of vault, staking, price, proof of storage and airdrop contracts. Its advanced web3 architecture is composed of nodes that have renters and hosts. The nodes aren’t mutually exclusive; a node can be both a renter and a host. BTFS is powered by two tokens: BTT and Wrapped BitTorrent Token (WBTT), which are equal and interchangeable.

Hosts receive BTT airdrops every seven days for providing file storage services, while renters pay to upload files into the system. As an advanced file storage system, BTFS features user-friendly operations such as file removal, encryption/decryption of files, and multiple file pinning.

BTFS is part of the BitTorrent Chain (BTTC). A combination of BTFS, BitTorrent and BTTC will enhance the development of decentralized applications (DApps), which in turn will ensure scalability and growth.

Dlive Protocol

In line with BitTorrent’s vision of disrupting the entertainment space, the network has brought users Dlive Protocol, a decentralized live streaming platform. Dlive allows low-cost streaming from anywhere around the globe. Since it’s built around BitTorrent’s architecture of nodes and swarms, each viewer’s stream can be distributed outwardly to other peers in the network. Viewers can earn through watching the streams and even stake their BTT on the platform to earn more BTT.

An Image of Dlive Livestreaming Protocol

Source: Dlive

As a peer-to-peer decentralized live streaming network, Dlive doesn’t need servers, CDNs or data warehouses to connect. Streaming on Dlive is easy; you don’t need a password or account to start, and streamers can easily receive tips from their viewers during their livestream. With a feature-packed road map, Dlive will be instrumental in the mass adoption of BitTorrent Token.

What Can BitTorrent Token Be Used For?

Similar to TRON, BTT is a utility-enabled token with valid use cases. As the native cryptocurrency for BitTorrent, BTT is used for governance, incentives, rewards and low-cost transactions on the entire ecosystem.

As a unit currency, BTT will ensure precise pricing of services and decentralized trading of computing resources. Due to the immense traffic on BitTorrent, it is not possible to make transactions directly on the Tron blockchain. Instead, the BitTorrent network uses a private ledger that is then transferred to Tron’s public blockchain. Such a system helps process BTT transactions faster, which adds to the health of the entire ecosystem.

BTT coins provide the necessary incentives for network users to continue seeding, even after they’re done downloading. As mentioned, the abandonment of swarms once downloads are complete has negatively impacted the network.

Every BitTorrent user gets the option to create a cryptographic BTT wallet as a way of getting oriented into the BTT-powered platform. The initiative hopes to drive the mass adoption of BTT, whereby millions of users will hold BTT coins in these wallets to power the network.

Looking toward the future, the BitTorrent team is working toward new options of earning and spending BTT. Outside the BitTorrent ecosystem, it is also possible to make payment in BTT through crypto payment gateway providers such as CoinPayments, Plisio, and CoinGate.

BitTorrent Tokenomics

The old BitTorrent Token (token symbol BTTOLD) is a TRC-10 token powered by the Tron blockchain. It has a total supply of 990 billion tokens. Six percent of the total supply was floated to the public through an initial coin offering (ICO) in 2019, while 2% was allocated to a private sale. Tron Foundation and BitTorrent share an equal allocation of 20% of the supply each.

The new BitTorrent Token (token symbol BTT) increased its total supply to 990 trillion tokens, and has a current circulating supply of 934.78 billion. It is an upgrade of the old token, from TRC-10 to TRC-20 contract standard.

Currently, the BTTOLD tokens can be swapped for the new BTT tokens in a centralized exchange or on the BitTorrent Chain official website.

BitTorrent Price Prediction — Is BTT A Good Investment?

After its acquisition by Tron, the BitTorrent network has introduced a lot of new value to torrenting. Rainberry Inc. (its new name) has released incredible and innovative products, such as BitTorrent Speed, BTFS and Dlive Protocol which are set to decentralize the entertainment industry.

With an ever-increasing market cap across various cryptocurrency exchanges, BitTorrent cryptocurrency seems to be gaining momentum in the crypto space. However, similar to any other crypto investment, time is a key determinant to the expected ROI on your BTT assets. There’s also the impact of bullish and bearish market cycles on BTT’s price for long-term investors. The crypto crash in the first half of 2022, for instance, has caused a major price drop in BTT’s price, from its ATH of $0.000003035 on January 18, 2022 to $0.0000007118 on June 19, 2022.

BTT price chart from January to July 2022

Source: CoinMarketCap

BTT is currently priced at $0.0000009268 as of the time of writing. Despite the current crypto winter, BTT’s innovation has led various experts to take a bullish outlook on its value. Price Prediction forecasts that BitTorrent’s price will reach an average of $0.00000327 by 2023 and eventually hit $0.00004376 by 2030. However, CryptoNewsZ's technical analysis is a little less bullish on BTT, with a price prediction of $0.00000180 by the end of 2023, rising to an average of 0.00000495 by 2030.

Remember, this is not financial advice. It's always wise to do your own research before investing in any token.

Where to Buy BitTorrent Coin (BTT)

BitTorrent coins are available for purchase on numerous top-tier cryptocurrency exchanges, including Binance, Kraken and Bybit. When selecting a suitable and active exchange to trade BTT tokens, it’s important to consider factors such as security, privacy, fee, customer service and availability of trading pairs. Bybit is a top-notch, customer-focused crypto exchange that offers all of these features and more.

As a one-stop destination for your crypto needs, Bybit offers features such as a revolutionary pricing system, lightning-fast matching engine, significant market depth and an HD cold wallet to keep your assets safe.

How to Buy BitTorrent Coin on Bybit

Once you’ve familiarized yourself with BitTorrent’s price and are ready to actually own the asset, you can easily do so on Bybit, which offers spot trading for the BTT/USDT pair. You can follow the simple steps outlined below to buy BTT on Bybit:

Step 1: Open an account on Bybit and verify it to complete the registration process.

Step 2: To transact BTT on Bybit, you’ll first need to own USDT. To purchase USDT, visit the Buy Crypto page. There, you’ll see several options to buy USDT: Express, Fiat Deposit, Crypto Deposit and P2P Trading. Choose the option that’s most convenient for you.

Step 3: Once you’ve purchased your USDT, click the Trade tab, then choose Spot Trading from the drop-down menu. You’ll be directed to the spot trading terminal.

Step 4: Search for the BTT/USDT trading pair on the left side of the trading platform, which usually displays BTC/USDT by default.

Step 5: To enter a trade, enter the amount of BTT tokens you wish to buy by filling in the values on the right side of the trading terminal.

Spot Trading BTT/USDT on Bybit

Source: Bybit

Closing Thoughts

The strategic partnership between BitTorrent and Tron Network to create the BitTorrent coin was a game changer for the crypto industry, and rightfully so. By leveraging Tron’s robust ecosystem, the BitTorrent protocol has managed to use the BTT token to incentivize its users and enhance the overall torrenting experience on the platform.

With the introduction of innovative products such as BitTorrent Speed, BitTorrent File System and Dlive protocol, Rainberry, Inc. is strategically placed to disrupt the entertainment industry. Decentralized sharing of seed files and downloading is necessary for the torrenting world, especially with increased censorship, and invasion of privacy by different entities.

Indeed, BTT token brings a viable product to the crypto market, and will remain relevant as the world transitions into the Web 3.0 internet revolution.