How to Use Kodi: What You Need to Know

obr2By Lavanya Rathnam — Last Updated: 17 Sep'17 2017-05-01T06:49:41+00:00

Kodi is free and open-source software for streaming content from your hard disk as well as the Internet. Though it was originally created for Microsoft Xbox, it has spawned its own community over the last few years and can now be used across multiple devices and operating systems. Though not everyone thinks Kodi is legal, you should be fine to use it wherever and whenever.

Kodi made its appearance in 2003 and since then, hundreds of developers have shaped it with their own ideas and skills. As a result, you can customize your Kodi experience by installing the many free and paid add-ons available today.

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If you’re thinking about getting Kodi or if you’ve just got it and not sure how to use it, this tutorial is for you. First off, we’ll see how you can install Kodi on different devices and then talk about how you can use it.

Installing Kodi

Before we get to how to use Kodi, let’s take a look at how to install it on several of the most common OSes.

How to Install Kodi on Android

Kodi is now available on the Google Play Store, so you can download it on any Android tablet or smartphone. Earlier, you’ll have to transfer Kodi through a USB device, Bluetooth or WiFi and install it through a process called sideloading — a long and involved process. Thankfully, that’s no longer necessary.

Here is a step-by-step instruction on installing Kodi on your Android device.

  • Turn on your device and go to the Google Play Store
  • You can either go to the Google Play Store app or the Google Play Store webpage
  • Download Kodi and install it

That’s it. You’re good to start using Kodi for streaming your favorite audios, videos and movies.

How to Install Kodi on Chromecast

Chromecast, if you don’t know it already, is a device that allows you to stream content on your Smart TVs using your mobile device. In other words, you can play a file on your smartphone or tablet, but watch it on your TV. Cool, right?

Let’s see how to stream from your Kodi-powered Android device to Chromecast.

A note here, as you can’t stream Kodi from iOS devices, so this set of instructions apply only for Android devices. Also, there are two ways to install Kodi on Chromecast. The first one is a long but power-friendly process, while the second one is a short and power-intense process. We’ll focus on the second one though since that’s much faster and easier than the other one.

  • Download and install the Chromecast app on your Android device.
  • Open the app, click on “cast screen/audio” option and simply follow the instructions
  • Open Kodi and choose the video you want to play

Now, your video will play on both screens.

Remember, you can’t use your phone to even take calls while the video is playing.

How to Install Kodi on Android TV

Installing Kodi on your Android TV is simple and easy. Here’s how you can do it.

  • Download the Kodi app to Android TV
  • Go to “apps” and navigate to “appinstaller”
  • Select your local disk option
  • Locate the Kodi app and press the “install” button

After the installation, open your Kodi app and enjoy your content

How to Install Kodi on Windows

Using Kodi on Windows is fairly a simple and straightforward process (here’s a video just in case).

  • Download the latest version of Kodi to your Windows device and run it
  • Follow the setup wizard to install
  • Start using Kodi

Now know how to install it across different devices; next, let’s see how to use Kodi.

How to use Kodi

Kodi provides a great user experience and gives you access to just about any content you want.

Installing Add-ons

As a first step, decide the add-ons you want, as this is what gives you access to TV, movies, live channels and more. Fortunately, there are hundreds of add-ons to choose from.  Do a little research before deciding on the best add-on for each service. Currently, there is no way of integrating any of our best cloud storage services with Kodi, but the devs may be working on a solution.

Some popular add-ons are Exodus, Velocity, Evolve, Kids Movies, SportsDevil, MoneySports and ChannelPear. Feel free to browse through this comprehensive list to download and install the add-ons you want.

To install any add-on, you need the Fusion add-on installer, as this makes it easy to install other add-ons on Kodi media center.

Installing Skins on Kodi

Once you’ve installed the add-ons, you can customize the way your Kodi looks. There are many different skins available that’ll give you a customized look and feel. Try different skins before deciding the ones you like the most.

Using Kodi for Videos

Here’s how you can watch videos stored in your hard disk or any other local storage.

  • Open your Kodi and click on “videos”
  • Click “files” to watch the content already stored in your hard disk
  • Navigate through the built-in browser to locate the video file you want
  • Click on it and your video will play
  • You’ll have a set of controls to navigate through your content

If you choose to stream content hosted on the web, here’s how you can do it.

  • Install the video add-ons you want
  • For some reason, if you want a different add-on than what you already have, go to “video add-ons” and click “get more”
  • This will bring up an exhaustive list of add-ons with a brief description for each one
  • Choose the one you want, click on it and select “install”
  • Open the add-on, browse through the videos it offers and choose the one you want to watch.

Using Kodi for Audio

You can use Kodi for listening to audio too.

  • Go to the startup screen and choose “music”
  • Decide if you want to listen to files from your storage or through add-ons.
  • If you decide to listen to the files from your storage, navigate to it.
  • To play music on the web, click on the add-ons tab and “get more.” This will bring up a list of extensions available for Kodi
  • Download the one you want and start playing your favorite tracks

Now you know the basic actions, but there are more ways, which allow you to make the most of what Kodi offers. The most popular of these is to use a VPN: Kodi has geolocation barriers, which means that you can’t access certain content because of your current location. Using a VPN means you can circumvent such restrictions, while also protecting your privacy.

Installing OpenVPN on Kodi

There are plenty of VPN add-ons available for Kodi, but for purposes of this article we’ll show you how to set up OpenVPN, which is an open source VPN. Any of our best VPN providers should install in much the same way.

  • Open Kodi and navigate to “system” > “file manager”
  • Click “add source”
  • Select “none”
  • If you haven’t installed Fusion yet, type this address: http://fusion.tvaddons.ag
  • Select “enter a name for this device” and type “Fusion”
  • Next, go to Kodi’s home screen
  • Go to “system” > “add-ons”
  • Click “install from zip file” and choose Fusion
  • Next, click “XMBC-repos” and choose English as your language
  • Click “Metalkettle-x.x.x.zip”
  • Wait till the add-ons are enabled and pop up
  • Click “install from repository” or choose “get add-ons”
  • Click on “Metalkettles addon repository”
  • Navigate to program add-ons and click “OpenVPN”
  • Choose “OpenVPN for OpenELEC” and click “install”

With this, the installation is complete. Next, you have to configure the VPN to get it working.

  • Click “VPN for OpenELEC”
  • When it launches, choose “setup VPN”
  • Select from the list of VPN providers
  • Enter your username and password
  • Next, select the server you want from the list
  • Wait till the server connects
  • Lastly, select “check my IP.” You should see a masked IP address

That’s it, you’re all set to make the most of Kodi.

Conclusion

To conclude, Kodi is a great tool to watch videos and listen to audio files. In addition, you can even stream content directly from the web through add-ons, some of which are paid but others are free.

Just remember to stick to popular add-ons and the ones that have good reviews, as there’s always a potential chance for miscreants to push malicious content through these add-ons.

That said, we hope the above instructions help you to set up and enjoy your favorite movies, shows, games and audio from your Kodi. Let us know if you have any questions by commenting below. Thank you for reading.

4 thoughts on “How to Use Kodi: What You Need to Know”

  1. For those that are a little adventurous with the chromecast option, all you need to do is download Kodi Cast Toggle and LocalCast apps from the google play store to your android device and you’ll be chromecasting the energy efficient way in no time at all! The Kodi Cast Toggle app makes it easy to switch from watching content on your device or on chromecast!

  2. Hi,
    is Metalkettle down? I try to install VPN for OpenELEC and get the “installation failed” message.
    Do you have another source where I could get the plugin? Since the NordVPN app does not work here, I have OpenVPN already installed on my Fire TV 2, but need the plugin for Kodi.

  3. is there steps for someone “simple” it seems the directions are not what I encounter. I add http://fusion.addons.ag
    here is where I get lost
    Again, this’ll open different options on your right-hand pane. From this choose, “.fusion”
    Navigate to the folders inside “.fusion” and double-click a folder called “start -here”

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