The world is rife with cloud storage providers who would be happy to hold on to your data so you can share it with others, but you have to give up a little control to keep your files on a server you don't own. BitTorrent's Sync service offers an alternative "cloud-free" solution, and the Android app has just been bumped to v1.4 with a number of new features.

Here's the v1.4 changelog.

  • Enhanced security with optional approval process.
  • Enhanced backup functionality allows you to back up any folder on your Android device.
  • Updated user interface allows you to easily share a folder of stuff with other people, all without using the cloud.
  • Easily share folders via HTTPS link, email, or QR code.
  • Additional product enhancements and optimizations

BitTorrent Sync uses your own devices as "seeds" in a private torrent swarm. You can give access to other people to become part of the swarm for any file or folder. That means their devices with the client installed will also have a copy of the content, which adds to your syncing speed. Like regular torrents, Sync relies on having enough seeds to split up with work and get your files from one device to another quickly. At no time do they reside in a server someplace on the internet, and the only limit on file size is how much storage you have.

This update improves the interface and makes sharing files more secure with additional layers of security and file access restrictions. Sync works on Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, Linux, FreeBSD, and some NAS boxes. The more devices you have connected to Sync, the faster your transfers will be, so maybe it's time to get that old phone out of the drawer and put it to use.


Ryan Whitwam
Ryan is a tech/science writer, skeptic, lover of all things electronic, and Android fan. In his spare time he reads golden-age sci-fi and sleeps, but rarely at the same time. His wife tolerates him as few would.

He's the author of a sci-fi novel called The Crooked City, which is available on Amazon and Google Play.

  • Dave

    Finally! Death to cloud services!

    • Mayoo

      Cloud is nothing but a public and user-friendly and/or automatic FTP server. This functions as the same except that you have the storage in your hand instead of in a server farm somewhere and it includes P2P.

      Cloud is so much over-hyped. Yes it is useful, but it's only a "general public" FTP server.

      • RarestName

        You can use BitTorrent Sync to work with a folder on Dropbox across multiple devices. Fantastic reliability!

  • Edward Padilla

    Is this still closed source? I'd love to use it but not knowing what's really going on behind the scenes just doesn't feel right.

    • Stefan

      I switched to Syncthing a while ago and haven't looked back.

  • Brad

    So I have to leave all my devices on and connected and download the files as I need them... and THEN... unless I want the world to share it... I get it on the slow side because I'll have 3 seeds?

    • Sruly J

      Well you could always not seed and just be a leecher

  • JG

    Just in time for T-Mobile to start throttling users of torrent tech... yea! :) Though I suppose if there are a limited number of devices for it to connect to to get the data, it might not hog the network resources as much as a large public torrent would...

  • mateor

    I use this on all my devices. Great for personal syncing. I used to run an rsync server, but now I just use this.