Kodi is a popular free media center software that allows users to access videos, music, podcasts, and other content from the internet and local storage in a unified interface. With Kodi, you can stream movies, shows, live TV as well as play media files you already own. But first, you need to know how to downloading Kodi and install it properly.
Why Download Kodi?
There are many great reasons to download Kodi:
- Access tons of free streaming content like movies, TV shows, live sports, music, and more
- Highly customizable interface with skins and add-ons
- Available on multiple platforms like Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Raspberry Pi, and more
- Open source media center managed by non-profit XBMC Foundation
- Completely free and legal to download and use (just don't use it for piracy!)
Is Kodi Legal?
Yes, downloading and using Kodi itself is 100% legal. Kodi is just a media player app. However, adding third-party add-ons that enable free streaming of copyrighted content is illegal. While Kodi enables piracy, it's not an inherently illegal platform. As long as you use Kodi as intended as a media player and don't access unauthorized streams, it's perfectly legal.
Can Kodi Replace Cable?
For many cord-cutters, Kodi can definitely replace cable TV. With the right build and add-ons, Kodi provides access to tons of live TV channels, on-demand content, and IPTV. It takes some effort to setup correctly, but Kodi can absolutely function as a cable TV replacement when configured properly. Of course, it involves sailing in gray legal waters.
Kodi System Requirements
Kodi will run on most modern devices, but performance depends on meeting the minimum system requirements:
- 1 GHz processor for SD video, 2 GHz for HD
- Hardware accelerated video decoding (GPU)
- 1 GB RAM for SD, 2 GB for HD video
- Android 5.0 Lollipop or later
- OpenGL ES 2.0 graphics support
- iOS 10.0 or later
- macOS 10.8 Lion or later
Older and low-powered devices may struggle with high-quality video playback. For the best experience, use a newer device that exceeds minimum requirements.
How to Download Kodi
One of the best things about Kodi is it's available on almost any device platform. Here's how to download Kodi on various operating systems:
Download Kodi on Windows
- Go to kodi.tv/download
- Click on “Windows” download button
- Open the installer and follow prompts to install Kodi
- Launch Kodi from the start menu or desktop shortcut
Download Kodi on Mac
- Go to kodi.tv/download
- Click the “macOS” download button
- Open the DMG installer and drag Kodi to Applications folder
- Launch Kodi from the Applications folder
Download Kodi on Android
- Open the Google Play Store on your Android device
- Search for “Kodi”
- Tap install for the Official Kodi App
- Tap open to launch Kodi after installing
Download Kodi on iOS
- Open the App Store on your iPhone or iPad
- Search for “Kodi”
- Tap Get and then Install for the Official Kodi App
- Tap Open to launch Kodi after it downloads
Download Kodi on Raspberry Pi
- Download the LibreELEC or OSMC disk image for Raspberry Pi
- Use Etcher to flash the image onto your microSD card
- Boot up Raspberry Pi with microSD card inserted
- Kodi will launch automatically on boot
First Time Setup of Kodi
When you first launch Kodi, you'll go through a wizard to get Kodi setup:
- Select your language
- Configure video and audio output
- Set up libraries for media locations
- Choose add-ons to install
- Pick a theme or skin
Take your time going through the initial setup. The choices you make here will influence your ongoing Kodi experience.
How to Add Kodi Add-Ons
The real power of Kodi comes from installing add-ons that provide access to content. Here are some of the main types of Kodi add-ons available:
Access on-demand movies, TV shows, live TV, and more. Popular official add-ons include YouTube, PBS, Internet Archive, and Twitch.
Stream music, build playlists, and listen to radio stations. Top options include Spotify, SoundCloud, TuneIn Radio, and more.
View online photos and slideshows. Good choices are Flickr, 500px, Picasa, and others.
To install add-ons:
- Go to Add-Ons from the main menu
- Select Browser Add-Ons
- Choose an add-on source like the Official Kodi Repository
- Browse video, music, or picture add-ons to install
- Click the install button for the add-ons you want
- Your new add-ons will show up in the main menus
Popular Kodi Add-Ons
Some of the most popular Kodi add-ons include:
- Exodus Redux – Movies and TV shows
- The Crew – Live TV and sports
- Seren – Movies and TV streaming
- Venom – Multi-source movies and TV
- Tempest – All-in-one add-on
- Yoda – Movies, TV shows, sports
- Spotify – Official Spotify music add-on
- YouTube – Official YouTube add-on
Note that many popular Kodi add-ons are not supported by the Kodi team and exist in legal gray areas. Proceed with caution.
Kodi Skins and Themes
One of Kodi's best features is customizable skins that change its appearance. Some top skins include:
- Aeon Nox – Sleek, futuristic skin
- Arctic Zephyr 2 – Clean, Netflix-style skin
- Titan – Highly flexible skin for customization
- Estuary – Default Kodi skin with wide device support
- Confluence – Old school Kodi skin, easy to navigate
Install new skins from the Kodi repository or third-party sources. Then select your new skin in the Settings > Appearance menu.
Kodi Troubleshooting Tips
Don't panic if you run into issues using Kodi. Try these troubleshooting tips:
- Close and restart Kodi
- Force close background processes
- Clear Kodi cache in Settings > System
- Reinstall a problematic add-on
- Check for add-on updates
- Reset Kodi configuration and start fresh
- Google your specific error for help from forums
Reinstalling Kodi as a last resort can also fix many problems. Back up your library data first.
Other media center apps similar to Kodi include:
- Plex – Media server with slick apps
- Emby – Robust media server and client
- MediaPortal – Open source media center
- OSMC – Linux distro optimized for Kodi
- OpenELEC – Lightweight Kodi-focused Linux distro
For casual use, iOS and tvOS have Movies and TV apps, while Android has Google Play Movies & TV.
The Future of Kodi
Kodi is under active open source development by the non-profit XBMC Foundation. The future looks bright for Kodi with features like:
- Better HDR and 8K support
- Cloud integration with Plex/Emby
- Expanded platform and hardware support
- Voice control and smart home integration
- Media server functionality built-in
Overall, Kodi will continue evolving as a top free media center ecosystem across multiple devices and platforms.
Kodi is a powerful media center that can organize all your personal media and provide streaming access from the internet. Setup does take some effort, but the wide device support, customization, add-ons, and price make Kodi extremely compelling for cord cutters. Learn how to download Kodi properly for your device, avoid piracy, and enjoy this open source media center to the fullest.
- Is Kodi safe to use?
Kodi itself is safe, but unofficial add-ons can pose privacy and security risks. Stick to official add-ons and repos for the safest experience.
- Does Kodi work without internet?
Yes, you can use Kodi's local media playing features and installed add-ons without an internet connection. Streaming will require an internet connection.
- Can Kodi play 4K?
Kodi can play 4K videos but performance will depend on your device hardware and if it supports 4K output. Raspberry Pi currently doesn't support 4K in Kodi.
- Is Exodus Kodi legal?
No, the Exodus Kodi add-on is not legal since it facilitates access to unauthorized streaming content. Avoid third-party video add-ons.
- How do I get live TV on Kodi?
Use live TV add-ons like The Crew or install free IPTV playlists. You can also use PVR backend software like Tvheadend or HDHomeRun with a TV tuner.
Carry is the founder of this website and is passionate about IPTV. He loves taking his dogs for long walks with his wife Jessica. In his free time, Carry enjoys watching science fiction movies. Even though he has many hobbies and interests, his true passion is building and growing this website into a thriving community for IPTV enthusiasts. Carry puts tremendous energy into ensuring the website provides value for its members by offering the latest information and resources related to IPTV service providers, devices, applications and more. He hopes to foster an engaged community where people can connect over their shared interest in cutting-edge TV technology.