The popular Kodi Media Center is the result of countless hours of work from a fast-growing community of developers and users. Kodi is now a popular application for streaming free movies and TV shows on-demand, as well as live TV and sports. Kodi is more than just a video player, however. The media center allows users to play music, radio, access picture galleries, and with the newest release, music videos, and even weather forecasts.

Disclaimer: This guide is intended to help readers access content they already have purchased the rights to access, but are for whatever reason unable to access either temporarily, or permanently. does not support software piracy, and bears no responsibility for what you decide to do with the contents of this article. Furthermore, please note that in no way hosts, develops, or produces any of the software mentioned within this article. For more information, please see our full disclaimer here.

Before we Proceed

We highly recommend using a VPN when using Kodi. Kodi users have been known to receive copyright infringement notices for streaming movies, sports, and TV shows through various addons. If you would like to keep your streaming habits private, our recommendation is IPVanish - a complete privacy solution for Kodi users. It's also worth noting that purchasing a 12 month subscription will give you two months free.

IPVanish and Kodi

What Can Kodi Do?

Most users looking to get started with Kodi are coming for one key feature: access to free streaming content. This means live TV, sports, and on-demand movies and TV shows. The simple answer to whether Kodi can bring you all of this is: YES! However, keep reading to learn more about what this means, how this works, and whether all of this is legal. It’s important to know the details before you start diving into Kodi.

Once you really get started, you’ll learn all about how to install different “addons” or “plugins,” and even how to perfect your Kodi process through different skins and builds. Kodi can not only run well on a large number of machines, but can also be customized to look great on any device you use.

A Brief History of Kodi

Kodi started out as a somewhat simple media player for the original Xbox back in 2003. Over a decade later, and thanks to hundreds of developers and programmers, Kodi is now a high-functioning multimedia platform that can work on any number of systems, ranging from Mac, Windows, and Linux PCs, to Android devices and streaming devices like the Amazon Fire Stick or NVidia Shield.

Kodi has gone through many different versions, each improving on the last. In general, you’ll find that there is a new version of Kodi at least once a year. Currently, the program is on version 17 “Krypton,” while version 18 “Leia” is currently in development and nearly ready to roll out. Don’t worry if you don’t have the absolute latest version of Kodi. Many slightly older versions remain supported for quite some time, and upgrading from an older version to a new one will carry over any addons you already installed.

How Kodi Works

exodus documentaries

Kodi works by using what are known as Python scripts to pull streaming content from different websites. Within the Kodi community, these scripts are known as “addons.” You’ll be able to find hundreds of addons that cater to a large majority of the content you’re looking for. Want all of the latest movies and TV shows? Try Exodus, one of the most popular Kodi addons for this purpose. Looking for live TV? cCloud TV will get you access to thousands of channels, including US, UK, and international TV networks.

There are addons that provide streaming content for almost any topic. Anime and sports addons are particularly popular as well.

These are the most popular uses for Kodi, but far from all of them. With Kodi, you can do a multitude of things, such as play your DVDs, access online radio, and stream content to other devices that also have Kodi installed.

Where Can You Watch Kodi?

Amazon Fire TV

You can watch Kodi on a large number of different devices. As stated, Kodi works on Windows, Linux, Mac OSX, Android, and in some limited capacities, iOS. However, the best way to watch Kodi is by using a streaming device, such as Amazon Fire TV, Nvidia Shield, or even a Raspberry Pi. Kodi is designed to be incredibly versatile, allowing you to install the program either directly from app stores or the official Kodi website.

In some cases, you may find that your device’s official app store does not include Kodi. When that occurs, there are some ways to sideload Kodi onto your device and still enjoy the application and its many benefits afterward.

Is Kodi Legal?

Please note: AddonHQ is not a legal service. Our explanation of Kodi Media Center legal matters is for discussion and general, non-technical research purposes only. It should not be considered professional legal advice. For professional advice related to Kodi legal issues, contact a certified attorney or legal service.  

Kodi itself is perfectly legal. In fact, the XBMC Foundation, the organization behind developing the software, goes to great lengths to ensure the public understands that the software is designed to be a free, open-source media program that you can use at your discretion. That said, new users should be aware of the fact that many unofficial addons, that is, addons that are not located Kodi’s Official Repository, may be illegal or walk a very fine line between legal and illegal, depending on how your use the content.

Before you use Kodi, be well aware of copyright laws as they exist in your country, as well as internationally. Also, understand that some third-party addons are conduits to illegal sharing of copyrighted material. P2P addons, for example, a common concern.

We suggest checking out our disclaimer as well to get a better understanding of what that means for you. We suggest you be cautious with how you use any third party addons, especially given some may also be harmful to your internet security.

To learn more about Kodi legality, check out our post longer post on the topic. We highly recommend this post before you dive into Kodi. We cover legal issues related to different countries as well as the on-going issue with fully-loaded Kodi TV boxes in the UK.

How Do I get Started?

To get started using Kodi, we suggest you check out our Ultimate Beginner Guide to Kodi. This will help you better understand the program, what it has to offer in more depth and intimate details that you might not know about from simply downloading the program. However, if you’re itching and ready to dive right in, you can download the latest version by clicking here.