If 2004 was the year of BitTorrent, then 2005 is turning out to be a year of eDonkey, according to data collected by Cambridge, UK-based Cachelogic. By the end of 2004, BitTorrent was accounting for as much as 30% of all Internet Traffic, and a December 2004 crackdown by MPAA on major torrent sites such as Suprnova, turned the momentum over to eDonkey. The growing popularity of eDonkey is because the P2P service is fully decentralized, has relatively little spy ware and there are no “tracker” sites to shut down. Asians, and South Koreans in particular are big eDonkey fans, thanks to local versions of the software. Cachelogic CTO Andrew Parker calls this shift from Bit Torrent to eDonkey, a game of P2P ‘hide-and-seek.’
A fully decentralized version of BitTorrent known as eXeem was expected to rocket in popularity, but has less than 1% of total Bit Torrent traffic because of authors decision to include spyware technology at launch, one of the key factors in the decline of KaZaA along with the legal pressures. One of CacheLogic’s interesting findings is that the MGM vs Grokster case did not result in a rapid decline in P2P usage, but at the same time helped legal alternative services utilising P2P technology (PeerImpact, Mashboxx, iMP) get more traction in the market.
Meanwhile, Gnutella is making a comeback, despite being left for dead. I guess once off the radar of MPAA/RIAA Gnutella is quietly sneaking back. I think this should be a warning sign to all those boneheads who want Apple to raise prices on their songs – consumers are willing to risk the P2P option if pushed too hard.
Also, Why P2P Is Here To Stay