A Beginners Guide to Kodi Media Player to Kick Start Streaming

I was having a conversation with my #1 fan, my mom, and she was asking all these questions about Prometheus and how XBMC streaming works. She’s not the only one to ask me these types of questions. Over the past couple of years, I’ve done a lot of talking about the power of XBMC (now “Kodi” as of December 2014) to people both on and offline. I’ve talked about it in previous blog posts, however, I don’t think I’ve done a good enough job of explaining it and need to simplify. Someone told me years ago that when it comes to technology, explain it like you’re talking to an 8-year-old.

Therefore, as part of my business goals, I’m going to do a better job of explaining what I do. I am starting with this post and will follow up with a video series, so make sure you follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Google +, and my car.

When I get my mom to understand fully, odds are good that most anyone will understand. (Sorry, mom, but it’s true!) The target market for streaming content over the internet most likely is not a person who isn’t open to new things, especially technology. We all know at least one family member like this. I’m also not saying my mom is going to embrace streaming over traditional cable. My goal is to make her understand. Mom, you are welcome to a Prometheus at any time, you know. Also, if you’re having a hard time explaining XBMC to friends and family, share this post, and you’re welcome!

A Short Little History

XBMC is award-winning software that can be installed on pretty much any device. These devices include smartphones such as iPhone and Android (it won’t work on Blackberry Devices); tablets including iPad (mini) and Android; computers running Windows, Linux, and Apple iOS; and there are dozens of desktop streaming media players that can and do support XBMC software. A desktop streaming media player is a small computer that you hook directly to your TV (an example is the Prometheus HTPC). You then control the desktop box with either a remote control, keyboard, or an app on your phone/tablet.

Originally, XBMC software, which stands for Xbox Media Center, would only run on the first generation of the Xbox gaming console. It was an instant success and further development started so it could be installed on different devices moving forward. Learn even more from the Kodi website.

Add-ons That Provide Content

Once Kodi is installed, there are a number of “repositories” that you can install which are filled with all the “add-ons” you need to get your TV, movies, and live stream content.

What is a Kodi repository? Very simply, a Kodi repository, or “repo”, is the online home for a specific type of add-on(s). When an add-on is developed, the software programmer finds it home within a repository so it can be easily downloaded. Also, having the repository installed allows the programmer to send updates to ensure the add-ons continue to work. Some popular repositories are:

Canada On Demand repo – which gives access to all the major Canadian content providers such as CBC, CTV, and Global
MettleKettle repo – which has the MoviesHD add-on
XunityTalk repo – which has Cartoons HD and HD2 along with Vdoubt25 (live-streaming international sports) and over 40 other add-ons
Lambdas repo – which has Genesis, Football Today, and NHL/NBA on demand
TVAddons repo – which contains the best Kodi add-on of all, Phoenix

What is a Kodi add-on?

A Kodi add-on (3rd party plugins) is a program that links you to servers that give you access to all sorts of content (TV shows, movies, cartoons, sports, music, adult content, etc.). Think of each add-on like Netflix, only better. There are add-ons for all types of movies, all your favorite up-to-date TV shows (series), kids programming and cartoons/movies. Watching Sports with 3rd party addons will let you stream sports from all over the world.

I will write more in the future on the best repositories and add-ons that you should have running for the ultimate Kodi streaming-content experience.

Is It Easy to Install and Start Streaming?

Short answer, yes. It’s very easy thanks to TV Add-ons and the fusion setup wizard. The wizard makes it easy to get some of the most popular add-ons and their corresponding repositories. This will get you streaming in a matter of minutes, but there are some very important repositories that you’ll need to find and install manually. TV Addons won’t have everything. The great thing about Prometheus is that it comes fully configured and all you have to do is turn it on. Now that’s even easier.

Is This Legal?

Short answer, yes. Kodi and its add-ons make it easy to find all your programs, including live streaming of TV. There is no downloading and no file sharing. The major legal issue with downloading and peer-to-peer torrent file sharing: you share the files you download with others over the internet, which is technically illegal. This doesn’t happen with Kodi.

In addition, I also tell clients who ask about this, that your Internet Service Provider (ISP) gives you anywhere from 100Gb of unlimited data transfer each month, depending on your speed and package. This amount of data isn’t for email. It’s for streaming content. You are already paying for content. Bet most of you didn’t know that.

Please let me know if you need further information, or have any questions.

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