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Netflix is seriously considering adding support for P2P video streaming using state-of-the-art technology. Perhaps inspired in part by Popcorn Time, the video giant is inviting applications from people with BitTorrent experience to fill the position of Senior Software Engineer and help with the completion and implementation of the ambitious project.
With around 60 million subscribers worldwide, Netflix is a giant in the world of online video entertainment.
The service carries huge amounts of data and consumes a third of all Internet traffic in North America at peak times.
The use of data from Netlix is quite expensive for the company and at times also overloads the network and causes the stream to be buffered. However, thanks to P2P-based streaming, these problems could soon be a thing of the past.
In a job advertisement at the end of April, Netflix plans to add a senior software engineer to its team. While this is nothing new, the description includes information about the company’s P2P streaming plans.
“Our team is evaluating emerging content distribution technologies and we are looking for a highly talented senior engineer to expand the peer-to-peer technology knowledge base and lead technology design and prototyping efforts,” the application reads.
The software developer is hired to lead the project from start to finish. This includes the design and architecture phases, implementation, testing, internal version and final evaluation.
“This is a great opportunity to hone your full-stack development skills while expanding your understanding of the state of the art in peer-to-peer content distribution and network optimization,” writes Netflix.
A few weeks ago, Netflix announced to its shareholders that the BitTorrent-powered piracy app Popcorn Time posed a serious threat. However, the application makes it clear that BitTorrent can also be used for legal distribution.
Under the qualification requirements, Netflix lists experiences with BitTorrent and other P2P protocols. WebTorrent or a similar project that contributed to the open source torrent streaming tool WebTorrent or a similar project is listed as a preferred professional qualification.
In other words, existing Popcorn Time developers are well-suited candidates for this position.
– You have experience with peer-to-peer protocols such as the BitTorrent protocol
– You have many years of experience in developing peer-to-peer protocols and software
– You have contributed to a major peer-to-peer open source product like WebTorrent
– You have extensive experience in developing web-based video applications and tools
The move to P2P-based streaming seems like a logical step. It will be possible to stream videos in a higher quality than is currently possible. In addition, it will provide a significant cost reduction.
BitTorrent creator Bram Cohen will be happy to see Netflix consider using its technology. He previously said that Netflix’s video quality is really terrible, adding that BitTorrent-based solutions are far superior.
“The fact is, with BitTorrent, it is possible to give customers a much better experience at a much lower cost than ever before. It’s really not being used properly and that’s really unfortunate, ”said Cohen.
While the job posting is further evidence that Netflix is seriously considering moving to P2P-based streaming, it is still unclear whether the new technology will ever see the light of day.
The job posting