Vuze: BitTorrent With a Friendly Legal Face

vuze.jpgVuze is a BitTorrent based content distribution platform that competes in the ever growing TV over internet market.

Vuze comes from BitTorrent application provider Azureus and is built on the Azureus platform. We previously looked at Vuze when it was known as Zudeo in December 06. An awful lot has happened in this space since in the past six months, including the launches of Joost, Bablegum and Veoh. Vuze has evolved as well.

The key selling point of Vuze is HD content, which the company provides through a variety of content partnerships with companies such as Starz, The BBC, A&E, and Showtime. Vuze has a strong emphasis on community; users are able to create channels for content, rate, and have conversations around content. Producers can upload their original works and can even charge a download or rental fee.

Comparing it to the competition is difficult as Vuze is a distinctly different offering. Vuze is extremely easy to use, which in itself is rather amazing given it comes from Azureus; the Azureus BitTorrent client being known for its relative complexity. The line up is solid; yes, you can get a lot of the content elsewhere but usually it’s not in HD. The need to download content could be seen as a negative, low resolution previews are available on demand but for full HD clips it’s a matter of waiting, and depending on your internet connection this can involve a long wait. Then there is the legal aspect: this isn’t BitTorrent as most people know it because all content is 100% legal and in many cases is charged for, which begs the question: if it’s not delivered on demand and you have to pay for some of it, wouldn’t some users just download the illegal version for free? Perhaps iTunes would make for a better comparison in terms of the model.

Overall though Vuze is a good package, maybe not quite as appealing as Joost but with more to offer than Bablegum. I can’t fully compare it to Veoh yet as the Veoh client has crashed for me three times in as many hours but I can say with certainty that Vuze is more stable.