Jul 262015

Article by David Loth.

Have you heard of the latest movie streaming client on linux? The torrent community is buzz with latest open source movie streaming software born after that popcorntime has been closed. Popcorntime was a client based app for streaming movies for free.

Applications similar to it allows users to stream movies (with subtitles) and TV series, at no cost, and that may be illegal in your country so make sure you read the disclaimer before using Popcorn Time or any software related to it!


https://popcorntime.io/ client

Features of Popcorntime

Great movies

Popcorn Time looks for the best torrents from the most important sites.

Awesome catalogue

If there is HD movie torrent out there then Popcorn Time will find the best version possible and start streaming it right away.

No restrictions

Unlike Netflix you can watch any movie as many times as you want. All you need to get started with Popcorn Time is a proper internet connection

History of Popcorntime

Popcorn Time quickly received positive media attention, The app was much appreciated for ease of use and it’s similarity netflix’s interface. It got so much media attention that it invited wrath from MPAA and due to law suits the program was abruptly taken down by its original developers on March 14, 2014. Following which the inventors decided to release popcorntime’s code on github.

Legality from Wikipedia

The legality of the various Popcorn Time clients matched that of all other Bittorrent clients plus the additional issues that applies to sites like the Piratebay and YTS itself, due to the explicit linking to movie content; its website claimed that the software was possibly illegal depending on local laws.

In the UK a court order was given in April 2015 to ISPs to block URLs that provided either the Popcorn Time application software (PTAS) or “sources of update information” (SUI) – i.e. pointers to torrent-indexing sites. The court found that (unlike previous cases concerning indexing sites directly) neither websites providing the PTAS nor the SUI could be construed to be “communicating a work to the public,” since neither contained any specific information about any specific work. It considered it entirely probable that both the providers of the PTAS and the SUI could be held to be “authorising acts of infringement” by users, but this was not the case that the claimants had raised at the hearing. Instead, they had claimed that the providers had been authorising acts of infringement by content-hosting websites, but then that claim had not been made out.

However, the judge found that the Popcorn Time suppliers did “plainly know and intend” for the application to be “the key means which procures and induces the user to access the host website and therefore causes the infringing communications to occur”; and on this basis had “a common design with the operators of the host websites” and therefore shared a joint liability for the copyright infringements (joint tortfeasance). It was therefore appropriate to order the ISPs to block the websites as provided for by section 97A of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988.[13][14]

On May 20, 2015, the government of Israel blocked all access to the official downloads of Popcorn Time, due to a lawsuit from its biggest cable and satellite providers for copyright infringement. Although the download sites have been blocked, anyone who still has a copy of the installation file and/or the program will not be affected, and there’s no denial that there are other sharing sites that can distribute installation files.

As with other Bittorrent clients, the IP addresses of users can easily be determined by third parties. In early 2015 many German Popcorn Time users received demands for damages of 815 Euros. The high amount was justified by the fact that the application not only downloads but also distributes movies, a fact that not all users were aware of.


On March 14, 2014, Popcorn Time’s website and GitHub repository were abruptly removed, with the developers stating that despite the unexpectedly positive media coverage that the software attracted, they simply wanted to move on, and that “our experiment has put us at the doors of endless debates about copyright infringement and copyright, legal threats and the shady machinery that makes us feel in danger for doing what we love

Popcorntime code has been forked by many startups and they have reskinned and released their own version of the software.

Popcorntime Alternatives

As wrote, popcorn time original software is not available anymore, so here is a list of top 3 Popcorntime alternatives.


Popcorntime.io is a free and open source fork of the original Popcorn Time program. This program is directly based on the original Popcorn Time code and the source code for popcorntime is available for viewing and editing on Github. The latest version of popcorntime has now support for Apple TV and Chromecast which means that you can seamlessly watch movie on big screens.

I’ve tested the 3.8 binary version on my PC and it works nicely, to install it just go on their homepage and download the latest client for your linux architecture (64 bit in my case) it’s around 30MB.

Unzip it on a directory and simply run it from a console with the command: ./Popcorn-Time, the interface it’s really simple to use and from tehre you can watch your favourite movie, tv-series or anime.


Popcorn Time is available on windows, linux, macosx and IOS platforms.  The program has built in VPN which allows it’s users to watch and stream movies anonymously.This fork of popcorntime has been available for more than a year 1 year.


Zona is considered as the best popcorntime alternative outthere. The have close to 500k movies in their database. Unlike popcorntime they don’t restrict themselves to YTS for searching torrents. The only downside of Zona is that the interface is in Russian and it sometimes become overwhelming for non Russian speakers.
Do give popcorntime softwares a spin. I am sure that you are going to love it!

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