uTorrent is one of the world’s most popular BitTorrent clients, with most users preferring it over other solutions due to its lightweight operation and low memory footprint. BitTorrent Inc has slowly been adding new features into the client, upsetting some users in the process, but the latest change will no doubt be controversial. TorrentFreak reports that adverts will soon be integrated into the client that will should generate significant amounts of additional revenue for the company.
BitTorrent Inc took to the uTorrent forums yesterday to make the quiet announcement, indicating that adverts will be added to the client in a coming update within the next few weeks. Specifically, the company will offer featured torrents at the top of the torrent list, allowing artists and studios to promote their content to a huge number of users: around 125 million, according to TorrentFreak
The adverts will have several tiers. The first will promote any new features or services from BitTorrent Inc. The second will come from “offer partners,” which might include security products or privacy services, while the third will advertise independent artists. Anyone using the updated version of uTorrent won’t be able to turn offers off, however, instead only being able to skip any unwanted ads.
BitTorrent Inc says that the change won’t affect users privacy, but offers will be targeting based on IP address locations. As always, the company is trying to find a balance between offering free software and generating a healthy income, although TorrentFreak has been informed by a source that current revenue falls between $15 and $20 million, with the company “backed by millions in venture capital.”