A new service called Share enables people to send files of any size, free and as often as they like, to one or more specified people. It’s being offered to the public in open alpha from its developers, the folks at BitTorrent.

Share cuts through the buzz about cloud storage by using its eponymous peer-to-peer protocol instead of a giant server farm. Due to the very nature of distributed computing, Share users download files directly from the sender, and each additional person sharing the same file increases the transfer speed since the file is disseminated more widely.

Unlike the BitTorrent most people think of, however, Share users define their own private circle of who’s involved.

“Share is the culmination of over a year’s research into personal media sharing,” said BitTorrent chief strategist Shahi Ghanem. “We have always known that BitTorrent is one of the fastest ways to send or receive a large file. [Share] is much faster than traditional ‘cloud’ solutions and easy for anyone.”

He added that sharing via email or over social networks requires people to shrink the file sizes by making concessions, like reducing resolution or cutting bits away from a photo or video, which is doubly unfortunate given the cameras and recording software that have put high quality into the hands of average consumers.

It’s very simple to use. Files to be sent are dragged over into the appropriate pane, just like moving them from folder to another, and the recipients get a notification that it’s there. Share users download a small client for Windows or uTorrent for Macs. Once the service is through with testing and is stable, Share will be integrated into all BitTorrent and µTorrent software clients.

Related links:

BitTorrent blog – Now in Alpha: Fast, Free and Unlimited Personal Media Sharing

TorrentFreak – BitTorrent Releases New “Share” Application

GigaOm – BitTorrent takes on Dropbox with personal file sharing

Photo by Flickr user kalleboo/Karl Baron, used under Creative Commons license