uTorrent team mulls new revenue model

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uTorrent, the most used BitTorrent client in the world with an estimated user base of 150 million, is not happy with its revenue model and its makers are looking to generate money by possibly charging its users.

The light-weight BitTorrent client which has been free till now, and we hope that it remains that way in future, has been trying to monetize to support its development team by bundling software as well as serving ads. The result is that users are not being delivered a nuisance-free client as ads make the user experience similar to those on web pages.

Though this model did provide BitTorrent with the necessary funds, it says that they have “never been satisfied with this revenue model”. Why? Well rightly guessed by BitTorrent, “it requires compromises that detract from a premium user experience.”

What’s the way out then for BitTorrent? In a blog post, the company notes that they have been having internal discussions of how to provide a better user experience with uTorrent while also financially supporting the team that is working behind it.

In a post uTorrent notes “We want to find a model that adds value to our product and our users. We want to find a better way.”

With simple goals of continuing to make uTorrent the best torrent client, and being open and transparent about the whole process, the team said that they will be testing several ideas over the next few weeks and months. There is this one particular statement in the post that attracts the most attention: “Provide our users with clear options for supporting uTorrent (with options for every budget)”.

If we dissect the statement, it seems that uTorrent is planning to charge its users in some form – may be monthly subscription or per download or even one-time buy.

The team may also ask for a voluntary donation – a route which have been adopted by many companies that offer free services – but chances are that this may not provide the team with a steady income stream.

Then there is this speculation that uTorrent may be modularised with users having to pay for added functionality.

We don’t know what the team has decided and all these are mere speculations, based on the fact that the team is looking for a new revenue model.