It has been a little while since we heard anything from TVAddons, the Kodi addons site that has been embroiled in a series of copyright cases. Recently the site launched its Github Browser as part of its continued attempts to provide "resilient and decentralized" links to Kodi addons.
Now TVAddons has launched Feeds for Git Browser, a new feature that makes it possible for anyone to create a list of their favorite Kodi addons and then share them with friends, family and followers.
Kodi is a perfectly legal, open source media center. It can play any kind of audio and video, and is packed with features. However, its support for third-party add-ons, including those that allow for illegal streaming, means that it’s often viewed as being synonymous with piracy.
Google frequently tweaks its search algorithm to downgrade pirate related terms, and Kodi's reputation -- deserved or not -- means it has become a victim of this approach.
If you want a convenient solution for playing media, Kodi should be at the top of your list. The free and open source media center is cross-platform, meaning it can run on most operating systems.
The best way to experience Kodi, however, is when it is the focus of a Linux-based operating system. For example, LibreELEC exists solely to run Kodi. Its lightweight nature allows it to run on fairly meager hardware, including Raspberry Pi. Today, a new version of LibreELEC is released. The main reason for this update is to add support for the newly released Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+.
Kodi continues to be in the news, often for all the wrong reasons. The media center software is synonymous with piracy, even though you need to install third-party add-ons to use it for illegal streaming purposes.
Today, however, there’s good news for Kodi users -- the team behind the software releases the first version of Kodi 18 (Leia), the next generation of its media center software, and you can download the brand new build now.
TVAddons has been very much in the news over the past year or so, with the controversial site constantly fighting to prove it is doing nothing illegal, and did not exist with the aim of providing access to copyrighted content. In the latest stage of its on-going battle with copyright holders, the site has lost an appeal hearing in Canada after a judge overturned a ruling from June last year.
It had previously been ruled that a search warrant (an Anton Piller order) against Adam Lackman had not been correctly executed, thereby negating any evidence it resulted in. Bell, Videotron, Rogers and TVA appealed against this ruling, and a judge has now overturned the original verdict, throwing further confusion onto an already confused situation, and bringing into question the interpretation of evidence put forward in the case. The judge also ruled that TVAddons was "clearly designed" to be used by "those who want to circumvent the legal means of watching television programs and the related costs."
Kodi is excellent software. I mean, an open source and cross-platform media center -- what's not to love? Hell, it can even be used to emulate classic video games! And even though I don't do it, I know it is popular with the piracy crowd, thanks to easy-to-install add-ons that allow free streaming of paid content. I'm not judging -- I know many of y'all are hurting financially, so do what you've got to. I prefer to just watch movies when they come on TBS, TNT, and the like, but I digress.
The next version of Kodi is called "Leia," and it is currently under development. With that said, you can run pre-release versions now with great success. If you are waiting for an official "stable" version of Kodi 18, however, you are probably wondering how the development is going. Well, according to a new blog post from the developers, everything is coming along swimmingly. In fact, they have shared some details and statistics about version 18. Some particularly interesting aspects? Kodi 18 will get Google Assistant support for Android and the ability to handle 8K video.
Kodi is a superb, and very flexible free media center, but in the past year or so legal crackdowns, court cases, vanishing add-ons and other bad publicity have made people wary of it, and understandably so. It’s not illegal to use Kodi, but installing add-ons that let you stream copyrighted content for free could get you into trouble.
In the wake of all this bad publicity, rival streaming service Mobdro has been gaining in popularity. The app can be installed on any Android device, including phones, tablets, Amazon's Fire TV Stick, and Google's Chromecast 2.
Unofficial Kodi add-on provider TVAddons promised to 'change how people access streaming media forever', and two weeks ago it released a new GitHub Browser to make it easier to browse and install Kodi addons.
Following feedback from users, the site has now introduced an updated standalone Git Browser for Kodi with fixes and new functions.
TVAddons has previously promised to 'change how people access streaming media forever', and now it is delivering on the first phase of the Kodi addon revolution. The newly announced GitHub Browser makes it easier than ever to browse and install Kodi addons.
The browser makes it possible to install any Kodi addon directly from its developer's own GitHub repository. It's all part of a plan that will make the TVAddons community "more resilient and decentralized."
There's no denying the massive popularity of Kodi, and the streaming media center has become infamous as well as famous. While the negative press concerning the software tends to focus on the potential for piracy, there's also the question of privacy and security.
Kodi includes -- as does the likes of Plex -- a remote access feature. While wonderfully useful for when you're away from home, it also poses a security risk and represents a serious privacy concern if not correctly configured.
As someone who was born in the 1980s, I experienced the golden age of video games. While the graphics were archaic by today's standards, the games were much more fun than the ones of today. People tend to forget that fun is the most important aspect of video games -- sound and graphics be damned. You bought a completed game and there were no updates, DLC or loot crates to be had. It was an amazing time.
Luckily, enjoying these classic games of yesteryear is very easy thanks to emulators. While the legality is a bit sketchy, you can download thousands of retro games (ROMs) and play them on your PC with near-flawless results. To make things even more convenient, the Kodi media center can now be used to play these ROMs. If you want to try this for yourself, I am happy to say you can do so immediately. The folks over at TVAddons have created a very useful guide.
Six years ago, web developer umOuch launched XBMC HUB, the first add-on community for the XBox Media Center (Kodi's original name).
It provided an easy way to find and install unofficial add-ons, and later evolved into TVAddons, branching out into new areas in the process. In 2016, TVAddons even created its own fork of Kodi, called FreeTelly.
Kodi started life as XBMC (XBox Media Center) and was designed to run on Microsoft's original Xbox. The software has since then enjoyed a meteoric -- and somewhat controversial -- rise, and is now available for most platforms, including Windows, Mac, Android, and Linux.
One platform it was missing from was the latest generation of Microsoft's console, the Xbox One, but that oversight has finally been corrected. You can, from today, install Kodi on both that console and the Xbox One S. Although there is a catch.
There is a lot of software in the world, and much of it is terrible. It is rare that a truly great program comes along that actually disrupts things. When that software is open source, it is even more remarkable. That is why Kodi is such an impressive program. The open source project has impacted the way much of the world consumes music, movies, TV and more -- both legitimately obtained media and pirated content.
Earlier this year, we shared with you that a pre-release version of Kodi 18 "Leia" 64-bit for Windows was available. There was a big catch, however -- it was not up to par with its 32-bit brother. And so, many people just stuck with the 32-bit version, because, well... why not? It is finally time to make the jump to the 64-bit variant, however, as according to the Kodi team, it is now identical to the 32-bit version from a feature perspective.
Using Kodi is not without risk. While crazy scaremongering attacks might (and indeed should) have you rolling your eyes at the people making the outlandish claims, the truth is there are legitimate issues to be aware of. You could be hacked, or spied upon.
The developers behind Kodi have announced that users should update to the latest version of the media center software immediately "to improve security and reduce possible risks."