New ASUS wireless router has Bittorrent and hard drive built in

Dang this is THE router for the avid software/TV/music/movie pirate. Not that we’d condone such behaviour. Just sayin’…

The ASUS WL-700gE includes a 160GB 3.5″ hard drive as well as a BitTorrent client that can keep those downloads going while your PC is switched off.

The hard drive is easily user-upgradeable… just pop the lid of the case and install like any other drive. The only catch is that the router software is on the hard-drive not in ROM so you’ll have to clone the contents of the supplied hard drive onto a new hard drive before installation.

Because the Bittorrent client is actually embedded in the wireless router the BitTorrent transfers don’t go over WiFi which means your WiFi LAN speeds won’t be compromised by heavy P2P traffic.

You can also order “home delivery” of Bittorrent files when you’re at school/uni/work according to ASUS’s marketing materials. “Tell the WL-700gE what you need to download from a system at the office or school and when you get home all the downloaded files will be safely organized in the WL-700gE.”

The hard drive is also shared as a home file server and can stream videos to Viiv PCs wirelessly.

But as Tim Shaw used to say on the famous Demtel ads “but wait there’s more!”

The router also has three USB 2.0 ports for connection of additional external hard drives or a USB printer. You can also plug in a USB memory stick press a button and have the contents of the stick automatically saved to the hard drive.

Amazingly you can connect a standard USB webcam into the router and turn it into an IP camera that can be accessed from any internet connection.

It also acts as a wired router with four ethernet ports on the back.

The only downside for all this rather amazing functionality is that it’s the cost of a cheap PC: $499.