Torrenting over the years has traditionally meant heading to a website that acts as the gateway to the torrent so you can then download them, and then you wait for the download to complete inside a torrent client such as BitTorrent. From there you stop the file from seeding and then shift it over to the desktop of your computer where it can then play.
The downside with doing it that way is there is no way around having to wait for the file to complete downloading before you can play it because it can’t play until you open it and you can’t open it until you have it 100% completed its downloading phase.
Another issue that has propped up lately is now many of these torrent sites are being blocked by governments so regular folk like you and me can’t access them. That usually depends on where you are in the world. For example, if you’re in Australia at the moment and try to get access to The Pirate Bay, it will say it is blocked by government restrictions. To get around those restrictions you’ll need to start using a VPN, but be careful which VPN you put your trust in. Some of them like the Hola browser extension can be simple to use and also carry more risks with them than people realize.
One of the more common ways to play movies without waiting for complete downloading was to use the Hola Google Chrome plugin. However, you need to be careful if you choose to use it. There have been many stories coming out in recent times about how you should not use the Hola extension with its VPN because it can do more harm than good. Apparently according to The Daily Dot, using the popular browser add-on results in them using your browser as an exit node so just like how you are using other locations around the web for the torrent you are getting access to, other people are going to be using your computer as a place that helps them, too.
Also worth noting is that the Hola feature isn’t available anymore where you could just hover your mouse pointer over the torrent and expect it to start showing the movie. Or at least we couldn’t get it to work when we tried.
Visit: Hola browser extension
123Movies is a website that you can visit where you just click the button to play the movie, and there is no downloading required; you just stream the movie directly from your web browser as if you were watching Netflix. You’ll find a wide variety of movies and TV show available to watch and it even shows you many of the latest movies that are out in the cinema, although those ones can sometimes be of pretty poor quality.
There are a few things to watch out for, though. For starters, since you watch this from the browser and there is no subscription fee, they sponsor it with advertisements—but not the high-quality ads that we show that don’t bother a computer. Sites that show torrents aren’t accepted into the same advertising networks as sites like us, so they need to resort to showing a lower quality advertisements. What’s more, often they show pop-up/pop-under ads which are really annoying. They do it because their ads don’t pay out very well so they feel like they aren’t making as much money as they should be with the millions of monthly views they get. Also, showing the pop-up/pop-under means better money than a standard banner, and that’s why they use them.
Similarly to 123Movies, FMovies lets you watch film and TV shows directly from your browser just by streaming the torrent instead of having to download it from a website like The Pirate Bay and then open it from a torrent client like Bit Torrent.
There’s actually quite a lot that FMovies has in common with 123Movies—like the entirety of the website’s layouts, for example—and it could be because the same people own them. Oftentimes when startups and established online businesses have covered pretty much all there is to cover within their niche, they’ll build another website that’s pretty much the same thing and attempt to double their traffic and revenue. It would be our guess that that’s the idea behind 123Movies and FMovies, but we can’t be sure. Finding details about the website owners when it comes to stuff that promotes illegal activity is never easy—they usually take all the necessary precautions to make sure they can’t be seen as a pose to websites like us who refuse to be extorted for some additional privacy. Should there ever come a time when them giving up our privacy turns into a situation where our safety has been sacrificed, then we’ll go after them relentlessly until it is their safety well and truly in danger. That’s just how we prefer to roll.
Popcorn Time is a free software BitTorrent client that allows you to watch movies directly from the application thanks to its interrogated media player. It’s similar to both FMovies and 123Movies but instead of watching the movies from a website, you download the application and open it up on your computer, and then you stream the movies from within the application itself. Apart from that, everything else is pretty much the same: you just stream the torrent and don’t download anything, so there is no waiting for the download to complete.
After trialing it ourselves, we were happy with Popcorn Time; however, it does struggle to play movies sometimes simply because there aren’t always lots of people seeding. You don’t have any issues with most new movies playing, but if the movie is aging and wasn’t very popular, there might not be anything you can do to watch it since it relies on seeding and there aren’t that many people seeding. FMovies and 123Movies don’t have that problem. They tend always to be able to play a movie, no matter how old. It’s probably got something to do with the fact that FMovies and 123Movies get played directly from the web browser, so they tend to get more users and they might be fetching their seeds from the one database.
Apart from the downside of not always having as many seeders, Popcorn Time is an excellent choice because it doesn’t have low-quality advertisements giving you pop-up/pop-unders and slowing your computer down. If you don’t use any kind of an ad blocker and you’re interested in only watching new movies, we’d suggest using this over the other sites directly from your browsers that are listed above.
Visit: Popcorn time
You can stream torrents directly from your Google Chrome web browser by installing the Torrent Stream add-on. It’s just a plugin that you install from the Chrome Web Store just like you’d install any other plugin. You won’t find the icon available in the top right corner of your browser. Instead, you’ll find the icon from the chrome://apps/ link or when you open a new browser tab. Just open it up and paste the URL of the magnet link from the torrent into the available field and then the torrent starts playing on your computer’s screen.
Quite possibly one of the most underrated tools out there, Torrent Stream is the only way you start watching movies without the download completing that doesn’t have anything to do with a website or application. Some people have reported it not working which might explain why so few people tend to use it, but it just takes a few minutes to get started and then it should appear on your screen. It is, therefore, slower than some of the other options, but it’s also very unique—you won’t find another simple plugin extension to do this.
Since Torrent Stream relies on magnet links though you’ll need to find torrent websites that provide them, not all of them do. That means your options are more limited. We weren’t able to work out any way to get a YIFY torrent to load for example. You might also struggle with other big names in the torrent industry like MKVCage.
Visit: Torrent Stream
There is a web browser in existence out there called the “Torch browser, ” and one of its many attraction is the fact that you can run torrents directly from the browser itself. Based on Chromium the Torch browser isn’t exactly a slouch when it comes to performance either, and that’s not even why most people install it. In reality, any web browser not owned by Microsoft or Google is going to struggle to match Edge and Chrome for quickness, but that doesn’t stop other browsers coming into the marketplace with different features that might appeal to people.
The Torch browser also comes with a media grabber so you can download any streaming videos or audio, Torch Player so you can play your media directly from the browser, Torch Music so you can listen to free music from the browser, Torch Facelift so you can add different backgrounds to Facebook profiles, Torch games so you can play games directly from the browser, a unique drag and drop feature right from the browser so you can share files easier, a sharing features so sharing has never been easier, and also a download accelerator so your downloads happen faster.
Visit: Torch Browser
Tribler is an open source peer-to-peer file sharing program and works similarly to other torrent clients like BitTorrent or uTorrent. Its main focus was anonymity, but as it turns out, it also has the added advantage of allowing you to play movies directly from the app user interface and before the torrent completes. Why didn’t they advertise this feature? Who knows. It might be why it never really kicked off to become one of the world’s most used torrent clients, or it might have something to do with the fact that it started out as a school project and those kids are no longer going to school together. Whatever the reason, we can see with our knowledge that not many people are using this client, but at the same time, there’s nothing wrong with it, and it does deserve to be on the list of torrent clients that allow you to watch before the download completes.
Despite the fact that Tribler isn’t getting used anywhere near as much as other clients like BitTorrent, it is still a very impressive program. Tribler has had roughly three and a half million euros spent on its developers for funding and has a team of 1-15 scientists and engineers who work on the project full time still to this day. Also, if you’re interested, the website is getting roughly 85,000 monthly views/potential new downloads, which isn’t awful.
Visit: Tribler website
The Fetchr tool won’t let you watch movies without download, but many of you might still be interested in checking this tool out if you are into viewing torrents. Although it is a paid service—after you’ve made use of the first free 60 minute trial—many people are choosing to go in this route due to its ability to not require a VPN service to keep your identity protected from your ISP and authorities who might want to get you in trouble or make life difficult for you.
There are quite a few services popping up out there that do what Fetchr does, and if you combine the numbers of each, you’ll see that there are heaps of people interested in what Fetchr does—they just aren’t all signed up with Fetcher right now. Fetchr is one of the best for what it does, and you can end up watching your torrents without having to wait very long for the download to complete because it fetches them fast—so fast, in fact, that its own website refers to it as “insane” speed.
Visit: Fetcher website
The Zona application works much the same way as Popcorn Time where you download and install the app, open up and pick a movie or TV show from the wide selection and then when it starts playing, it streams the torrent without you needing to download it in full. All it takes is a few seconds for the torrent to start seeding and then the movie begins. If there aren’t many people watching the movie, then the downloading that is happening in the background can be slow, and you can experience some stops and starts as it gains momentum again.
Technically applications like Popcorn Time and Zona aren’t streaming because they do download the files onto your computers. If you watch the movie long enough for the download to complete—which is a similar amount of time that you would wait for something like BitTorrent to finish downloading one of your movies—then you have that movie stored on your computer, ready to rewatch anytime you want it and without having to use up more data. So when you look at it from that perspective, it’s actually probably better than just streaming which would use up the bandwidth all over again when you want to watch the same movie a second time.
Visit: Zona website
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