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Popcorn Time alternative difficult to find as app shuts down

Popcorn Time, a once-popular program that made watching pirated movies and TV series almost as simple as watching them on Netflix, has been shut down.

Courtesy: ivacy.com

The app debuted in 2014 and became one of the most popular services for obtaining unauthorized video content within a year. In a financial report released in 2015, Netflix Inc. warned investors about the rise of Popcorn Time, and CEO Reed Hastings stated, “Piracy continues to be one of our largest competitors.”

The service’s developers abandoned it soon after its launch, and emails released after a Sony Group Corp. attack suggested law enforcement may have been involved. However, because the code for the app was open-source, other developers jumped in to release fresh versions.

Popcorn Time’s developer told Bloomberg in 2015 that the site was not liable for piracy because it didn’t contain any pirated content. Instead, the software provided a connection to machines all over the world that were hosting the content via the BitTorrent file-sharing protocol. He claimed at the time, “The torrent world was here with millions of people long before us and will be here with BILLIONS of users way after us.”

The app’s creators wrote reporters on Tuesday, announcing the app’s demise. Popcorn Time’s goodbye note proclaims “R.I.P.” at the top of the page, with an illustration of a bag of movie-theater popcorn with X marks for eyes.

A chart indicating interest over time based on online searches for the app is also available on the site, similar to the one Netflix released to investors in 2015.

Hollywood is still dealing with the issue of movie piracy. During the pandemic, it was compounded by the fact that many films bypassed theatres and went straight to digital. Despite the fact that movie studios continue to take a tough legal stance against piracy, various alternatives to Popcorn Time have emerged.

The app debuted in 2014 and became one of the most popular services for obtaining unauthorized video content within a year. The service’s designers abandoned it soon after its launch, and emails released after a Sony Group hack suggested law enforcement may have been involved. However, because the code for the app was open-source, other developers jumped in to release fresh versions. Popcorn Time’s developer told Bloomberg in 2015 that the site was not liable for piracy because it didn’t contain any pirated content. Instead, the software provided a connection to machines all over the world that were hosting the content via the BitTorrent file-sharing protocol. He claimed at the time, “The torrent world was here with millions of people long before us and will be here with BILLIONS of users way after us.”

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