Kodi - A Guide to Get you Started
Getting started with Kodi.
Even if you haven’t used it yet, you’ve probably heard about it - Kodi (previously know as XBMC).
Long gone are the days of opening your laptop and playing a movie on that small screen with the TV sitting just in front of you in all its glory… but on stand-by. With the advent of Android based streaming devices and set-top boxes such as WeTek Hub, WeTek Core and WeTek Play 2 more and more people are using Kodi on their TV’s and getting a next level experience!
On this article, we’ll show the basics of Kodi and how to quickly start using it.
What is it?
Simply put, Kodi is a free and open-source media player designed specifically with home entertainment in mind. This means that it is optimized for your television and made to be easily controlled by a remote, such as those provided with WeTek devices. It's open open-source spirit, makes the perfect partner for JeOS endeavors to build around it, such as OpenELEC and LibreELEC.
What does it do?
There are multiple ways in which you can enjoy this software:
As media streaming hub, wirelessly connecting all your devices and concentrating all the fun on a single screen;
Use it to watch live TV via IPTV;
As one of the most versatile players around, supporting just about any file format for audio and video.
Take advantage of its thousands of plugins and add-ons, such as Youtube, SoundCloud, Twitch, USTVNow and much more.
This beloved media player is available for a wide number of systems:
WeTek streaming devices and set-top-boxes
Android (your smartphone, tablet…)
iOS (sort of…)
If you have a WeTek device, you know that its integration with Kodi is very optimized. You simply need to download it from Aptoide - the largest independent Android app store - directly from your WeTek device. Here’s how to do it.
The Basics to get you going.
By now, you should have realized that Kodi is indeed a very powerful piece of software and can open a lot of doors for entertainment to invade your household. However, configuring Kodi and getting it to work may look like a daunting task. Fortunately, you’re reading this guide.
1- Ready-to-install add-ons.
There’s plenty of entertainment to enjoy out-of-the-box with Kodi. It’s really simple to setup add-ons for either PICTURES, VIDEO, and MUSIC.
Select one of these categories: PICTURE, VIDEO, MUSIC, PROGRAMS. (We’ll use Video for this example).
Click Add-ons followed by “Get more…”
Choose the add-on you wish to install.
Click Instal and wait to the program to install.
You can now access your newly installed add-on from Video > Add-ons
2 - How to change KODI’s skin
One of Kodi’s greatest assets and advantages of being open-source is that there’s a thriving community of developers constantly working to enhance it in numerous ways. Customization is one the most noticeable traits of this software and it’s really easy too.
Kodi allows you to simply change its skin in the most simple way. You just need to follow these steps:
Head to System > Settings > Appearance
Click on Skin and choose Get more…
Choose the Skin you wish to download (for the example we’ll use Metropolis).
Head back and apply the downloaded skin.
If you can't decide on the skin you want to use, check out our selection of 10 Stunning Skins for Kodi. It should help you decide the one that fits you best, however, there's nothing like trying as many as you can.
3 - How to add automatic subtitles
One of Kodi’s greatest strengths is how easy it is to add subtitles. So, if you’re watching a movie in a multicultural environment, everyone can enjoy (or at least most of the people).
Head to System > Settings
Select the Video tab
Scroll down to the Subtitles tab and click Default Movie Service or Default TV Service option.
Choose the subtitle service you wish to employ. Usually “OpenSutitles.org” works the best, but there’s many to choose from.
Now select the subtitle service you just installed.
(repeat the process for TV or Movies)
To activate subtitles on any given content, simply pause the video you’re watching, head to the subtitle icon and click Download.
Choose the subtitles you wish to use.
(if the subtitles become slightly off sync, use Subtitles Offset to delay or advance the subtitles)
4 - Use your NAS as a server.
NAS stands for Network Attached Storage, and basically, refers to a device holding one or more hard-drives can be connected directly to your network. With a NAS you do not have to have your computer(s) powered on permanently and your data will still always be available on your network and accessible from multiple devices
The files stored in the NAS will become available via the network it is connected to.
Kodi wiki has rather complete article on how to setup a NAS and connect it to Kodi. You can either purchase one from well-known manufacturers like Buffalo, Western Digital, Seagate, or Synology, or, if you can just re-purpose an old computer into a NAS and save some money.
One of the greatest perks of adopting this system is that you’ll have all your home media centralized, allowing you to stream your music, movies, TV shows, etc. to several devices running Kodi.
5 - IPTV via Kodi - Helping you cutting the cord
The number of people saying goodbye to traditional cable providers - the so-called “cord cutters” - is on the rise. They’re not only waving goodbye traditional TV consumption but also to huge monthly cable bills. How? The idea is to get free over-the-air or IPTV available channels and complement them with subscriptions for popular streaming services (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime…).
Kodi allows you to watch a wide variety of TV channels via IPTV. Other instances of Kodi, such as it’s JeOS counterparts like OpenELEC and LibreELEC allows you to even use cable, satellite and aerial connections. But first you need to assess your setup and needs:
Are you using an Antenna?
Do you have cable?
Does your device have a tuner?
Are you looking for IPTV channels only?
All these answers are very well documented explained on this guide.
If cutting the cord is your objective, then we would recommend that you look into what WeTek Play 2 can do for you. It features a powerful modular tuner for ATSC, DVB-C/T/T2 or satellite that you can use for live television via WeTv app.
Copy your Kodi settings to other devices
If you want to get Kodi up and running, the steps above are a really good help. However, you might start thinking "After taking so much time and passion into customizing Kodi to fit my needs, must I go through the whole ordeal if I decide to change devices?" Nope. Just take your settings with you.
Since it’s Kodi, we’re talking about, there’s more than one way how you can do things, the easiest simply being to make a copy of your userdata folder. On this case, however, we’ll show the option that might just be the most simple and comprehensive - Add-on:Backup.
More than simply allowing you to transfer your settings onto another machine, this add-on works as a real time-capsule, allowing you to schedule regular backups and export your database, playlist, thumbnails, add-ons and other configuration details to other devices or directly to Dropbox cloud storage.
Luckily, Kodi’s vibrant community already built a complete and intuitive step-by-step guide on how to use Add-on:Backup.
King among media-centers
It’s not by chance that Kodi is considered by many to be the best media-center. It’s multiple possibilities and tools make it a true asset in any home theater configuration.
Even though getting Kodi to do and provide just what you need may seem a little bit like a daunting task at first, fear not. It’s not really that hard and, most importantly, there’s a whole world of guides and articles about how to do pretty much everything.
We hope this guide is enough to get you going and, don’t forget, keep exploring and trying to take the best out of Kodi.