In America the most
popular file sharing application is by far the Kazaa software. In Europe this is
not the case as many Europeans have switched to alternatives. According to the
Sandvine research company, more than 76% of all P2P traffic in North America is
generated by FastTrack-based applications such as Kazaa.
In Europe FastTrack-based applications are
often in second place behind newer applications like eDonkey, which is
particularly popular for trading videos. In Germany
for instance, eDonkey accounts for more than 52% of file sharing traffic against
44% for FastTrack. This news was spotted by GristyMcFisty:
“The file sharing ‘marketplace’ is really only a few years old,
but it’s changing rapidly and we’re now seeing measurable divergences
along geographic, even national lines.” said Chris Colman, EMEA managing
director of Sandvine Limited. “In the beginning there was only Napster.
Today’s file sharing environment is much more fragmented, with a varying
proportional mix of current and emerging P2P applications dominating in
The study threw up a number of surprises – not least
the “near elimination” of Gnutella-based applications from the P2P file
“If a wildly popular application like Gnutella
can emerge and all but disappear in less than three years, it’s certainly
possible that FastTrack, too, could one day be headed for history’s
technology dustbin,” says Colman.
And the opposite can also happen. Pioneering file
swapping service Napster is making a legal return to business this month.
However, while this may be good news for music fans, it is not such a
welcome return for Internet Service Providers.
firm P-Cube warns that legal P2P sites too can be a “major headache for
The effects of P2P traffic force service providers
to increase network capacity, and expensive transit links, to prevent
network congestion and performance degradation for key applications such
as browsing and streaming, according to P-Cube.
Sandvine, markets technology which helps broadband service providers
manage P2P file sharing activity for greater operational efficiencies.
It estimates that 60-70 per cent of European Operators’ Bandwidth
is consumed by P2P traffic – so it’s just as well Napster will launch as a
US-only service, at least from the point of view of service
Source: The Register