There’s a myriad of ways to share digital files with anyone anywhere in the world — there’s Dropbox, WeTransfer, and old-fashioned email, for starters. However, one French startup is looking to make its mark in what has become an increasingly competitive market, with a slick desktop app that lets users share files using peer-to-peer (P2P) technology.
Based in Paris, Infinit has been available on Mac for a while, but this week it’s launching its Windows desktop app after an extended beta period. Though anyone can use it, Infinit is being targeted specifically at creatives with a need to transfer large files, and it claims to be more than 20 times faster than cloud-based services such as WeTransfer and Hightail.
The main difference between Infinit and the likes of Dropbox or WeTransfer is that the latter platforms rely on servers, with files uploaded and then downloaded again at the other end. Infinit skips the middleman, so to speak, electing for the shortest path — peer-to-peer. It promises end-to-end encryption too.
There are a number of neat features within Infinit, including “pause-and-resume,” which means that if you temporarily lose your Internet connect mid-transfer, it will automatically continue transferring when a connection is re-established.
Additionally, if you’re transferring, say, a music or movie file, Infinit will let you play the file during the transfer, though of course you won’t be able to enjoy it in full until the entire file arrives.
There are three main ways of using Infinit: the aforementioned P2P transfer option sends the file directly to another Infinit user, whom you can select by typing their username. But you can also enter any email address, with the recipient invited to download the file directly from Infinit.
Then there’s the “Get a Link” option, which also sends a file to Infinit’s servers and provides you with a link to the file — this is useful for sharing screenshots or other content with large groups of people, particularly those who do not use the Infinit platform.
Infinit is completely free to use for now, but there will be some premium features landing in the coming months. “It is the second step of our strategy,” Baptiste Fradin, cofounder and COO of Infinit, told VentureBeat. “In this first step, we wanted to make sure that the product-market fit was correct and that the added-value of the product was understood by users.”
Fradin says that Infinit for Windows already has tens of thousands of users on board from the beta period, across a number of industries including TV, cinema, gaming, and animation. Plans are afoot to work directly with these companies to tailor the premium features specifically for their needs.
“Our monetization plan will be presented as a freemium model to enable end-users to benefit from the product, and especially to compete aggressively against Web-based solutions such as WeTransfer,” added Fradin.
The idea behind Infinit isn’t new — a clever browser extension called AllPeers closed down back in 2008, apparently because there weren’t enough users to satisfy investors. Infinit has raised just north of $2 million in funding to date, courtesy of Alven Capital, 360 Capital Partners, Techstars, and a number of early angel investors.
The next major launch from Infinit will be native mobile apps, which we’re told will be coming “soon.” For now, you can use Infinit on your desktop.