Picking the Best Cloud Torrent Service: Offcloud vs Bitport vs Seedr
The cloud has made life more convenient for everyone. We use the cloud for everything — why not use it for torrenting? Save your hard disk space and your bandwidth for more important files by using the power of the cloud. Not to mention it will save you having to unblock torrent sites (or search for alternative torrent sites).
Cloud torrenting is private, secure and lightning fast. If you select a torrent that another user has already downloaded, it will become available for streaming instantly — cloud torrent services keep a cache of popular files on hand, so if ten users want the latest Linux .iso the provider doesn’t download it ten times and eat up bandwidth. You can access your torrents on all your devices thanks to cloud storage, and if you pick smart from our list of best cloud storage providers, you can transfer your files without getting anywhere near your hard drive (see our online storage pricing comparison).
Benefits of Cloud Torrent Services
When you torrent from home, your IP is broadcast to everyone. That’s the nature of peer-to-peer sharing, after all, and unless you’re using one of our best VPN providers you’re exposing your IP address to everyone. Anyone else downloading that torrent can see your IP — including copyright trolls or snoops. It’s good manners to seed the torrents you download, but slow connections and data caps can limit how much you torrent.
Cloud torrent services operate on powerful dedicated servers with uplinks much faster than a home connection. Popular files are cached by providers and you get instant access instead of waiting for the download to finish. Your media is available across all of your devices, including your phone and streaming devices like the Chromecast or Roku.
What You’ll Need
It’s easy to get started with cloud torrenting, as all you need is any device connected to the Internet and an account with one of these providers:
Offcloud, Bitport and Seedr all offer a free tier so you can try the service but with limitations on downloads or file size. Let’s take a look at all three providers and see how they compare.
Offcloud is a little different from the rest of the providers we’ve looked at, as it isn’t focused on downloading torrents. The company markets itself as “a simple, elegant and intuitive SaaS to retrieve any data from the cloud.” We were surprised at the amount of different sources Offcloud supports for downloading, and it even has a ticket box that allows users to suggest new sites to support.
It’s no surprise it integrates with YouTube, given the site’s popularity, but Usenet? This sets Offcloud apart from the competition, even if it does cap your Usenet downloads at 20GB daily. This might be enough daily usage for light users, or those who supplement torrents with occasional Usenet downloads.
Offcloud’s web interface is easy to use and presents you with a dashboard showing you your remaining bandwidth and space. The free trial limits you to 10GB of data transferred and only three links. When you have data you want to save, you simply paste the link into Offcloud and select from three options: instant, cloud or remote.
The instant option is essentially a proxy. You input a link, and Offcloud creates a tunnel delivering the content to your device over the web. It’s downloaded to your device, and not stored on the cloud, so if the original content is removed it will no longer be accessible in Offcloud. The cloud option fetches data and stores it on Offcloud’s in-house servers. You’ll get a new, secure link to access your data anytime, from anywhere, even if the original content is taken down.
The remote option requires some configuration on your part, as you’ll need to provide Offcloud with access in order to store data. The service supports FTP, SFTP or cloud storage services such as Google Drive and Dropbox. This is an excellent option for those who deal with spotty connections like mobile broadband or slow WiFi, but deal with large amounts of data.
This system allows you to grab the data you need and store it until you’re on a fast enough connection to download it locally.
To test the service, I used the “instant” option to download a free, public-domain movie, and the speeds weren’t very impressive. This is most likely due to the fact I’m in the U.S. and the Offcloud server was in France. Selecting the “cloud” option made the file available in a few minutes.
Note that Offcloud doesn’t intend to act as a “seedbox,” which is a server used to boost a user’s ration on private trackers by perpetually seeding a torrent. A spokesperson for Offcloud stated that they typically only seed torrents on a 1:1 ratio, uploading the exact amount they downloaded. For users that rely on public trackers or don’t care about ratio, Offcloud is a fine solution.
If you’re only looking for a cloud torrent provider, Offcloud may seem like overkill. But at $59.99 a year, it offers unlimited storage and bandwidth which makes for a better deal when you consider the limited storage offered by other providers. With all the feature included with Offcloud, it’s easily one of the best options available.
|Price||Storage space||Number of torrents|
|Free||Free||10GB||3 per month|
|The Good Kit||$9.99 per month||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|The Useful Partner||$59.99 per year||Unlimited||Unlimited|
Bitport.io’s service is fast and lets you stream your media to several devices, including Apple TV and Chromecast, as well as supporting Kodi. The company prides itself on making torrenting as easy as “Ctrl-C,” and it really is that easy. Bitport.io offers a free account that limits users to one torrent per 24 hours.
The interface looks great and works well on mobile, allowing you to pick a torrent while you’re away from home and access it later. I wanted to see what speeds were like with less popular torrents, so I picked a low-quality version of the same test movie and watched the speed steadily increase until it topped out at almost 30MB/s, finishing in three or four minutes.
The cheapest plan starts at $5/month and provides 30GB of storage and five download slots, meaning five actively downloading torrents. You can download an unlimited amount of torrents per day on all plans except the free one. In addition to the extra storage and torrent downloads, paid plans offer HTTPS downloads and anti-virus scanning, a nice bonus feature for wary users.
Bitport.io also seeds to a 1:1 ratio, but paid users can contact tech support and have this changed to a custom ratio. It’s a simple service, lacking extra features, but it serves its purpose well and at an affordable price.
|Price||Storage space||Number of torrents|
|Free||Free||1GB||1 per day|
|Small||$5 per month||30GB||5 slots|
|Standard||$10 per month||100GB||10 slots|
|Big||$15 per month||250GB||20 slots|
Seedr is another torrent service that offers a spartan interface and great usability on a computer or mobile device. The free tier limits you to 2GB of storage but places no limitations on the amount of files you can download, as I deleted and tried various torrents to get an idea of overall speeds.
You simply paste a link or upload a torrent file and it will quickly download, or in the case of popular torrents, it will appear instantly. Initially there was a file already in my account, courtesy of Seedr. Deleting it freed up some space and I selected the same torrent used in my previous tests. It appeared instantly, available to download or stream.
I tried an Ubuntu torrent, and had the same results. Popular torrents will show up as “collecting seeds” for a few seconds but instantly copy to a folder and are available for download or streaming.
Out of the three providers I listed, Seedr was the fastest, hands down. It took me longer to copy and paste the torrent link than it took for Seedr to deliver the files. For users of private torrent trackers, Seedr is unique in that it offers static IP addresses and private tracker support with the “pro” and “master” plans. Since private trackers rely on unique .torrent files, you can’t simply copy and paste the link as you would with public trackers.
You download the .torrent to your device and simply upload it to Seedr, and they’ll seed it to either a 2:1 or 5:1 ratio depending on your plan. Seedr offers fast, often instant downloads of torrents, and let’s you stream your media right away on whatever devices you own. Paid tiers start at $6.95 a month for a simple, fast service to take your torrenting to the next level, in the cloud.
|Price||Storage||Number of torrents|
|Basic||$6.95 per month||30GB||2 slots|
|Pro||$9.95 per month||100GB||5 slots|
|Master||$19.95 per month||1TB||25 slots|
Cloud Torrenting and Privacy
All of the providers discussed here have a strong stance on user privacy. Bitport.io’s main page even states “download torrents to a secured cloud; anonymously; fast.” Your IP address is never exposed to anyone when you download a torrent in the cloud, except to the service provider you’re using.
There is always the chance that the government could have a court compel a provider to hand over logs, and depending on the provider this could include your IP address and the list of files you have downloaded or stored under your account. The chances of this happening are unlikely, as services like Put.io have been active for years now without facing legal issues.
There are legitimate uses for torrenting, and the providers do not knowingly offer illegal content. They simply provide users with a way to quickly and securely access content on the web and store it. To date, there hasn’t been a single case of one of these providers handing over user data.
The solution is simple: use a VPN and an email created solely for cloud torrenting. Pick a provider that keeps zero logs and allows a payment method such as bitcoin or gift cards to ensure privacy and anonymity. Even if a cloud torrent provider is forced to hand over logs, you’ll remain anonymous thanks to the VPN (not to mention that it protects you from ISP snooping as well).
Remember: if they didn’t protect their users, cloud torrent providers would be out of business quickly. It’s a safer, more convenient alternative to torrenting using a client.
All three providers are solid choices for torrent users, but if you’re after the best performance you should stick to a provider like Bitport.io or Seedr. Users of private trackers are better off with Seedr, thanks to the built-in support for private trackers and long seed times.
|Provider||Starting price||Storage||Tested speed||Torrent slots||Seeding ratio|
|Offcloud||$9.99 per month||Unlimited||Varies||Unlimited||1:1|
|Bitport.io||$5 per month||30GB||Instantly for popular torrents.|
29+MB/s on random test.
|5||1:1, changes upon request|
|Seedr||$6.95 per month||30GB||Instantly for popular torrents. 10MB/s on random test.||2||1:1 or 12H|
Cloud torrenting is the future of file-sharing — instantaneous access to all your media, on all your devices, anywhere in the world. If you’re a fan of simple tools and just want to torrent, you can’t go wrong with Seedr or Bitport.io. Both let you add torrents and stream your content from your computer or mobile device from anywhere.
For one-stop access to an ever-growing list of sources, Offcloud can’t be beat. Usenet, torrents, Youtube and others are all available with Offcloud, downloaded to your device, Offcloud’s secure servers, or remote storage. Download it once and never worry about it being taken offline or tracking it down again.
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