Kodi is an open source media center application available for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS. The software provides a way to manage and play all of your music and video files as well as photos in an application that’s designed to work well on everything from a small smartphone display to a big-screen TV.

It also supports live TV (if you have a TV tuner or other supported hardware) and radio (if you have an antenna) and Kodi supports third-party plugins and themes that can change the look and feel of the software and add support for playing games, streaming internet media, and much more.

Two years after releasing the last major update, the Kodi team has announced Kodi 19 “Matrix” is ready for download. Here’s some of what’s new in the latest version.

Kodi 19 gets its code name from the “Matrix” movies, and when you first launch the app, you’ll see a Matrix-inspired splash screen. The overall Kodi user interface has been refreshed with updates to the now playing, playlist, and metadata views, among other things.

There are also some improvements for media playback, although some will only work if you’ve got the hardware to support them:

  • Software-decoding for the AV1 video codec
  • HLG HDR and HDR10 playback on Windows 10 devices
  • Static HDR10 and dynamic Dolby Vision HDR on Android

Kodi 19 also has better support for music videos – now Kodi can group music videos by artist, and if you have both a music library and a music video library, Kodi can grab metadata from your music files and display it for related music videos.

If you use Kodi as a PVR (personal video recorder, also known as a DVR or digital video recorder), there’s now support for reminders, home screen widgets, and improved navigation, context menus, and group and channel management.

Under the hood. Kodi 19 makes the move from Python 2.7 (which is no longer supported) to Python 3. This means some older plugins may no longer work, but Kodi’s developer say that “much of the community has come with us,” so if you find a plugin that doesn’t work with the latest version of Kodi, you may want to reach out to the developer of that add-on directly.

Kodi 19 is also adding support for tvOS, allowing you to run the software on an Apple TV device. But the latest version drops support for 32-bit iOS platforms.

You can find out more about Kodi 19 in the release announcement. Or just download the latest version and kick the tires yourself.

Incidentally, when I tried to download Kodi from the official download page, the latest version available was Kodi 18.9. But the stable build of Kodi 19 was avaialbel from the official mirrors page.



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6 replies on “Kodi 19 “Matrix” released with media playback, metadata, and UI improvements (cross-platform, open source media center software)”

  1. I am looking for use case of Kodi in present days of Smart TV, Tablet, Laptop etc.
    Why I will spend so much for a HTPC ? These are not cheap any more. Old PCs are better to keep in museum to reduce power consumption, or gift it to a child nearby.

    They only care for TV or Movie playing, while a good opensource photo viewer is till now lacking. Some thing similar to FastStone/XnView etc.

    Unless OEM or Smart TV manufacturers find any interest in Kodi, it’s almost useless. There are so many competitors. What’s the point being opensource on low cost ARM device.

    If I’m missing anything, please point out.

    1. It’s useful for streaming. The amount of content available is incredible with the right add-on.

    2. Ill start out with the obvious, to each his own……but, exactly what do you feel is “better” then Kodi, Id place Kodi on an Nvidia Shield up against any other app of its kinda Ive ever seen including WMPC, Mplay, Apple TV and even VLC and the extremely overhyped Plex that absolutely is now harvesting your data. Kodi isn’t for streaming the steaming turd that is Netflix, although it very easily can, I can’t name 1 feature aside from maybe VLCs real time screen stream from the buffer to the network……which i bet Kodi can do with an extension. Kodi is free, like actually free is the sense of financial cost and data harvesting cost, you control literally everything and won’t get some corporate entity coming along at some point in the future and remove features or raise the price or change the licensing etc etc etc. You’ll need a media library to get the full use of Kodi and these days literally ANY DISC can be ripped in under 1hr regardless of protection method, hell the workflow for blu-ray’s and UHD doesnt even touch the protection and they still rip 100% bit perfect…..which absolutely DESTROYS the quality of streaming. Watching Disney+ 4k UHD (arguably the best streaming quality available) is a total joke side by side to actual hard copy. Through my own collection, friends, used discs off Craigslist and Amazon (that I again resell as I dont need them any more) and Redbox, I have any title I could want. Id also say Kodi is updated far more often than any other app and certainly any other streaming box/device Ive ever seen. I think maybe a good analogy is, and I dont mean this as an insult to anyone but if you think “CD Quality” MP3s (or really ANY MP3s) are actually CD Quality, then yeah, you sadly might not be missing anything Kodi can offer you.

      1. That is true and while streaming as improved greatly in the last 5-10 years it still doesn’t beat a private collection of videos especially when not everything is available online when it should be. Stuff that ran for less than 4-5 seasons required for syndication first made it way on fledging cable channels, now is on some of the free to air HDTV stations use sub-channel space on 1080i/720P OTA channels, think MeTV.

        I used Kodi for archive content mainly and some YouTube still. But since I bought a Hisense Android TV with it’s native YT app, there is no use for it other than to download videos which is an option only with Kodi and the mobile app.

        I like it better than Plex Player.

    3. You can run Kodi on a $35 raspberry PI and do 4k. How is that expensive? lol. I have one on every TV in my house, and every one of them has access to my NAS with a huge movie library.

      1. It’s $35 in USA & UK and probably in China, not every where in this Earth. And don’t expect any customer care !

        Also you need to spend on a big display (smart TV nowadays), hard disk or NAS or router. And there is fear of damaging the HDD any moment. The PVR feature may not work with all hardware.

        I found VLC (on computer) and VLCFreemote or KDE Connect on mobile phone combination far better solution than Kodi+Kore.

        And for online streaming there are web browsers (may be little resource hungry for older computer) and in Microsoft/Apple/Google OS you will get an officially supported app for every popular service.

        After all an x86 computer is a multipurpose solution. You can not run any OS on an ARM board unless it’s optimised for that specific board (so no greatness of opensource unless you know ARM hardware programming).

        Another thing I noticed (at least in Ubuntu), Kodi connects to internet if it’s available, even after disabling all features requiring internet; don’t know with whom it keeps in touch always !! Even closed source programs like VMWare, XnView never tried to connect Internet !!

        Even Font size can not be changed much.

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