Kodi is an open source media center with unlimited interface customization.
Welcome to the first in a multi-part series about the wonders of Kodi Media Center. Here I am going to cover what exactly Kodi is, as well as how to install and use the app, and then install addons and builds afterwards.
What Is Kodi?
Thanks for asking! Kodi is a bit different than your normal media app. Instead of going into it and streaming video or music through the apps official servers, Kodi is instead a media center. It stores all of the content in one convenient place, and the user needs to provide it. This content can be anything from music to movies, TV shows and pictures. It also allows for complete customization of the user interface through skins. If you remember Windows Media Center back in Windows 7, it is similar to that, but not nearly as awful. Also unlike WMC, it runs on everything from Windows to Linux to OS X to any of your mobile operating systems, allowing for a seamless experience no matter your choice of device.
However, one of the greatest features in Kodi is it’s potential to do so much more than just be your one-size-fits-all center. Due to it’s dedicated community, and the fact that it’s open source, there are endless amounts of add-ons available for the media center.
What is an Add-On?
So, like stated before, Kodi is what the user makes of it. With the base app, the content has to be provided rather than it being given to the user. Add-ons grant Kodi access to online content so the user doesn’t have to provide it all themselves. Available both officially and through unofficial means such as through the community, add-ons allow for users to truly make Kodi their very own. Examples of add-ons include anything from an on-demand Anime launcher to a BuzzFeed browser.
Add-ons can be accessed through something called a repository, which is basically on online server (a cloud) that developers upload their different versions to. Users can then download those different versions and use them through Kodi’s user interface.
In addition to Add-ons and repositories, there are builds to Kodi. Think of a pre-set customization of Kodi with different add-ons and repositories to already. Instead of going and searching for all of these yourself, a build has some for you already, though builds can be known to have extra bloatware add-ons that the user may want, so it always pays to be careful and do research before-hand. Installing a build can be a bit more complex than installing an add-on, although for Android there’s an app called Complete Kodi Setup Wizard, which does it all for on in one click.
How to Download and Install Add-Ons
There are multiple ways to install add-ons, though most are fairly simple. They can add the specific repository to Kodi, allowing for downloads and updates directly from the developers server. They can download a zip file or even use an (unofficial, mind you) add-on installer. Finding add-ons is as easy as searching the name of the desired one, and then adding Kodi to the end of the search term. For safety reasons, be sure to research any add-on before installing, as Kodi requires a lot of permissions, and installed add-ons in-turn have the same ones. Be sure that you download from a trusted source in order to be sure that none of your information gets stolen or messed with.
I am going to go over to process here, using the excellent Exodus add-on. Exodus is most known add-on for movies and TV series and ‘on-demand’ movie TV channels. It grants access to movies currently in theaters to those on DVD, as well as new and previously aired television shows.
- Open Kodi
- Select SYSTEM > File Manager
- Select Add Source
- Select None
- Type the following exactly: http://fusion.tvaddons.ag and select Done
- Highlight the box underneath “Enter a name”, type fusion, select Done and OK
- Click the Home icon
- Select SYSTEM
- Select Add-ons
- You might get a “First run help…” notification, select OK
- Select Install from zip file
- Select fusion
- Select xbmc-repos
- Select english
- Select repository.exodus.zip
- Wait for “Add-on enabled” notification
- Select Install from repository
- Select Exodus repository
- Select Video add-ons
- Select Exodus
- Select Install
- Wait for “Add-on enabled” notification
Exodus should now be ready to use. It can be accessed by going to VIDEOS > Video add-ons > Exodus.
This post is just scratching the surface of Kodi. Be sure to check back soon for more great add-ons, builds, and features. Remember to be safe and do your research before downloading!