How to Add Music to Your Kodi Library

Kodi is a free and open-source media center that can do it all. Stream movies, download TV shows, download and play podcasts, and so much more. Although most people use the app as a video player, Kodi comes with some powerful music tagging and organization features that can make your life much easier. Once you add music to your Kodi library, all you have to do is fire it up and start playing.

Add Music to Kodi Library 1

Keep Kodi Private with a Secure VPN

Kodi can handle just about every task you throw at it, including being the center of attention at a karaoke party! One thing it can’t do is keep you safe online. With government agencies running mass surveillance programs and ISPs collecting, storing, and selling your private data, it often seems like it’s impossible to enjoy a safe and secure online experience, especially on Kodi.

The good news is you can protect yourself from these invasions of privacy by using a reliable and trusted VPN. Virtual private networks create a tunnel between you and the internet by encrypting every packet of data that leaves your device. No one can spy on your activity or see what content you’re accessing, and it’s nearly impossible for anyone to discover your true identity, as well.

In addition to these benefits, VPNs also come with a few extra features to make your online life a little more exciting:

  • Defeat region locks for unlimited movie streams from any country in the world.
  • Access Kodi add-ons securely without triggering ISP warning messages.
  • Bypass censorship firewalls for completely open access to the internet.
  • Secure your smartphone for safe internet access on public Wi-Fi

IPVanish – Fast, Safe, and Secure

Add Music to Kodi Library IPVanish

IPVanish is by far the best VPN to use with Kodi. The service offers the best balance of speed, security, and ease of use, providing all the tools you need to stay safe online without slowing down your connection. IPVanish offers full access to over 950 servers in 60 different countries, all while protecting data with strong 256-bit AES encryption and a zero-logging policy on traffic. Custom VPN software also offers DNS leak protection and automatic kill switch features, making it an absolutely perfect companion for Kodi streaming.

IPVanish offers a 7-day money back guarantee which means you have a week to test it risk-free. Please note that Addictive Tips readers can save a massive 60% here on the IPVanish annual plan, taking the monthly price down to only $4.87/mo.

Add the Music Section to the Kodi Home Menu

What do you do if you don’t see Music on the main menu? Add it! Kodi’s open-source nature means almost everything can be customized, including the navigation bar. Some themes and builds move or even remove Music from the main screen, but you can always add it back by following the guides below.

First, Change to the Default Skin

If you’re using a skin other than Kodi’s default “Estuary”, you might have to go through a different process to add Music to your main menu. It would be impossible to provide detailed instructions for every Kodi skin out there, so you’re better off switching back to the vanilla skin, then adding the Music sub-section manually.

Follow the steps below to restore Kodi’s theme to its default look and feel. If you’re already using Estuary, skip to the next section.

  1. Go to Kodi’s main menu and select the gear icon.
  2. Choose Interface Settings
  3. Select Skin at the top.
  4. On the right, click where it says “Skin”. A new window will pop up.
  5. Choose Estuary, which is Kodi’s default skin.
  6. Confirm your choice, then restart Kodi.

Toggle the Menu Items

With Estuary as your active skin, it’s time to jump in and turn on the Music menu. Start by going to the main screen and selecting the gear icon on the left. This will take you to Kodi’s core settings menu. Choose the Interface icon, then make sure Skin is selected on the left. Look to the right and you’ll see an option titled – Configure skin… Choose this and you’ll see the current theme’s settings page.

There should only be a few items on the left to choose from. Pick Main menu items to edit what’s available on Kodi’s main navigation bar. On the right you’ll see all the possible categories of media, everything from Movies to TV shows to Radios. Make sure the slider across from Music is on the right side. It should turn white when it’s active.

Kodi automatically saves any changes you make in this settings menu. Press Escape a few times to go back to the main menu. You should see Music on the left, just below Movies and TV shows.

Add Music to Kodi – First Time Setup

If you’ve never added music to Kodi before, don’t worry, it’s easy. Kodi walks you through the entire process the first time you do it. Think of it like a setup wizard for your albums. The guide below will help you through the initial run step by step.

Step 1 – Music Section

Add Music to Kodi Library Music adding

Run Kodi and go to the home menu. You should see Music listed on the nav bar to the left. If you don’t, see the section above for instructions on how to add it. You’ll be greeted with a blank screen with just one option. Click Add music… and Kodi will open up a new window.

Add Music to Kodi Library Browse for Music

In the Add music source window you have two options: browse for your music folder, or type it in manually. Most people will want to simply browse for their songs, so click that button on the right. Navigate to the folder where you store your music and confirm your selection.

Step 2 – Directory Scanning

Add Music to Kodi Library Naming music

Kodi will add the directory in the source window. Give it a name in the box at the bottom, then click OK. Kodi will confirm that you want to add the media to your Kodi library. Choose Yes to proceed with the scan, or click No to go back and change folders.

Kodi will take a few moments to scan and organize your library. This could take several minutes if you have a huge collection of songs, but most people won’t have to wait that long.

Step 3 – Browsing

Add Music to Kodi Library Music collection

Once Kodi has catalogued your albums and songs, you can access content from the main Music menu. You’ll have access to sorting options such as Recently Added, Artists, or Singles. You can also browse genres or let Kodi pick something at random.

Adding New Music Sources to Kodi

If you already have songs in your library, the process for adding new content is a little different than above. Kodi still keeps things pretty simple, fortunately, so you can add new music sources and start listening with just a few steps.

Step 1 – Music Categories

Add Music to Kodi Library Categories

Start by going to Kodi’s home menu, then enter the Music sub-section. You should be greeted with your library displayed with album artwork in a tidy grid. At the top is a set of smaller icons labeled Categories. Scroll to the right and you’ll see one named Files. Click to enter the music management area.

Next you’ll see a list of all your current music sources, which is usually simply a collection of the folders on your device that you’ve added to the library. At the bottom is an Add music… option. Click this. You may need to scroll down to find it.

Add Music to Kodi Library New music sources

You’ll be greeted with Kodi’s familiar sources screen. You have two options here, including browsing for content or manually typing in directories. The best choice is to browse for your music folder manually. Click the button and navigate to the folder that holds your song collection.

Step 2 – Scanning and Listening

When you add a new source you should give it a descriptive name. Type something in the box at the bottom of the source menu, then click OK. Kodi will confirm adding the content to your library. Click Yes, then sit back and let the software scan your new content.

Most people won’t have to wait more than a few moments for Kodi to index their entire library of albums. Once it’s complete, you’ll be able to browse and listen to anything you like with a couple of quick clicks.

Extend and Manage Your Kodi Music Library

Add Music to Kodi Library Listening to music

Once you have your albums added to the library, the real fun begins. Kodi offers some easy tools that let you add, remove, modify, or supplement your songs with just a few clicks. Below are some of the most popular tasks Kodi users engage in after filling their library with music.

DON’T FORGET: Use a VPN when streaming through Kodi. IPVanish gives our readers an exclusive discount of 60% and you’ll only pay $4.87 a month to keep your browsing safe and private.

Install Music Add-ons for Kodi

If your saved music selection isn’t big enough, Kodi offers a wide variety of options to expand your library to include streaming content from the web. In most cases you don’t even need to sign up for any new services, just open Kodi, install the add-on, sit back and enjoy.

We’ve collected some of the best music add-ons for Kodi in one convenient location. Browse the list and install whatever you like! It’s also a good idea to check out ThunderStruck, one of the most popular music streaming add-ons in the Kodi ecosystem. And if you have a large library of songs, consider checking out the IMVDb Kodi add-on to organize, tag, manage, and stream your collection with ease.

Removing Music Sources from Kodi

Go to Kodi’s home menu and choose the Music section. Navigate right in the Categories icons until you see Files. A list of your current music sources will appear. Highlight the music you want to remove and open Kodi’s context menu. If you’re using Kodi on a desktop device you can right click, otherwise try using your device’s alt-click icon or button feature.

On the context menu simply select Remove source. Kodi will ask to confirm the removal. Click Yes and the music will automatically be removed from your installation. Don’t worry, the files themselves won’t be deleted, just the listing within Kodi itself.

Re-Scan Music into Kodi

Once you’ve got a few local sources set up in Kodi, your music library will start to grow. If you add or remove files within those folders you may need to tell Kodi to manually rescan the directories to update its listings. Most of the time this takes place in the background when you launch Kodi, but in case it doesn’t, manually activating it only takes a second.

From Kodi’s home menu, choose the Music section. Navigate the Categories icons until you see Files. Your current music sources will appear below. Highlight the directory you want to re-scan and open Kodi’s context menu. If you’re using a mouse and keyboard all you have to do is right click. If you’re on another device, try its alt-click icon or options feature.

Inside the context menu you’ll see an option called Scan item to library. Click this, then click Yes when Kodi asks if you want to re-scan existing tags. This is a good practice to maintain accurate information in your Kodi library. If you have a huge collection of albums, you may want to skip it to save time.

Kodi will start the music re-scan right away. It should complete after a few moments, then you’re free to listen!

Conclusion

Got your music library prepped and ready? Kodi is one of the smartest media center apps on the market. It makes short work of large libraries and unsorted clouds of files. Even if your songs are poorly tagged or thrown into a single directory without organization, Kodi can help keep everything straight, easy to see, and easy to access.

Read How to Add Music to Your Kodi Library by John Bardinelli on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

Best Kodi Builds for Fire Stick and FireTV (Confirmed to Work in 2018_

Amazon Fire TV and Fire Stick devices are some of the best ways to stream movies on your TV. They’re easy to use, inexpensive, and offer a ton of additional features, including jailbreaking to sideload new content. Best of all, by installing Kodi on a Fire TV device, you can access an endless supply of free movies and TV shows, all with a fast and straightforward interface.

Kodi’s open-source nature makes it easy to create custom content for the media center. A lot of users have gone to the trouble to craft original builds for Fire TV, which provide a new skin and a new layout for Kodi users to enjoy. These builds often come with pre-installed add-ons to help new users get started as quickly as possible. And if you go with the right builds for Fire TV, you can make your life a lot easier!

Below we take a look at some of the best Kodi builds for Fire Stick and Fire TV that are confirmed to work in 2018.

Stay Safe with the Right VPN

Kodi is a popular tool that tens of thousands of people use every day. There are hundreds of unofficial add-ons, skins, and custom builds, so many that it’s hard to keep track of which ones work and which ones have been discontinued. A side effect of this open community is that many of Kodi’s add-ons bend the rules a little bit by accessing pirated content. This has gotten the attention of corporations, government agencies, and ISPs, causing a crackdown on Kodi users, even if they’re using their software for completely legal purposes.

You can stay hidden from these prying eyes by using a VPN. VPNs act like a secret tunnel between your computer and the internet, encrypting everything that leaves so no one monitor your activity. Governments can’t spy on your streams and ISPs can’t throttle your connection, meaning you’re free to watch anything on Kodi and your Fire TV Stick.

Choosing a VPN is a challenging task, so below we’ve provided a recommendation that’s fast, easy to use, and incredibly secure.

IPVanish – Best VPN for Fire TV and Kodi

IPVanish has fast speeds, incredible privacy options, and a no-restrictions connection policy that’s perfect for Kodi and Fire TV users. The service runs over 950 servers in 60 different countries, each one offering incredibly fast downloads with almost no lag. Your data stays safe with 256-bit AES encryption, a zero logging policy on all traffic, DNS leak protection, and an automatic kill switch, as well, which locks down your identity to keep you hidden online. IPVanish also provides unmonitored traffic so you have full, private access to torrents, P2P networks, and Kodi add-ons, all with unlimited bandwidth!

We tested the IPVanish service to see if it lived up to the hype. For speed test results and security audit details, check out our full IPVanish review.

IPVanish offers a 7-day money back guarantee which means you have a week to test it risk-free. Please note that Addictive Tips readers can save a massive 60% here on the IPVanish annual plan, taking the monthly price down to only $4.87/mo.

Installing and Managing Kodi Builds

Kodi builds come in a ton of different varieties, adding everything from new sources to new navigation schemes. You’ll want to know how to tweak and even remove these conversions before diving in, as you never know when an add-on won’t be exactly what you expected, especially on Fire TV.

First, Enable Build Installations

Kodi’s add-ons and builds are stored in repositories, vast collections of extensions created and maintained by the Kodi community. To access this content you’ll need to enter some information so Kodi can download the file from an external server. This requires a quick settings change inside Kodi, otherwise you won’t be able to install any custom content. Follow the steps below on your Amazon Fire TV Stick installation of Kodi to get things ready to go.

  1. Open Kodi and choose the gear icon to enter the System menu.
  2. Go to System Settings > Add-ons
  3. Toggle the slider next to the “Unknown sources” option.
  4. Accept the warning message that pops up.

Builds and Wizards

Builds are usually only available to download via wizards, which adds another step to the installation process. To get a build you first add a repo to your version of Kodi, then look for the right wizard, then open the wizard and select the build from its interface. It can be a little confusing at first to download something completely unrelated just to get a single build, but after a while the process becomes second nature.

How to Change Back to Kodi’s Default Skin

When installing custom builds it’s easy to bump into problems. Faulty layouts, incompatible configuration settings, there’s no shortage of things that could go wrong. Fortunately it’s easy to swap back to Kodi’s default skin where you can remove the affected build files or simply stream using the basic look.

Follow the steps below to enter the skin configuration page. This will let you switch your skin back to Kodi’s standard “Estuary” while leaving the new sources and add-ons installed by your custom build intact.

  1. Go to the Kodi main menu.
  2. Select the gear icon, or find the settings page on your current theme.
  3. Choose Interface settings, which is sometimes just called Interface.
  4. Find Skin, which should be under the Look and feel category. Note that it’s just “Skin”, not “Skin Settings”.
  5. Under the Skin configuration page you’ll see an option to switch the current theme. Change your skin back to Kodi’s default, called Estuary.
  6. The new layout will be effective immediately. Return to the main menu and continue using Kodi as normal.

Best Kodi Fire TV Builds for 2018

Ready to customize your Kodi installation? Below are some of the best builds that run like a dream on Fire TV, all of which are verified and working in 2018.

Fire TV Guru Build

One of the all-time best Kodi builds for Fire TV is Fire TV Guru. This incredible package rearranges everything on Kodi’s menus to make it easier to navigate with a Fire TV remote, eliminating one of the biggest frustrations Fire device owners have when they use Kodi. It also maintains a lightweight design and small footprint, allowing you to install on a Fire Stick and run it without any stuttering or slowdown.

How to Install the Fire TV Guru Build

The Fire TV Guru Build is a great resource for Kodi users running the app on Fire devices. Installation is pretty simple, though you do have to go through the extra step of installing a wizard before you can install the build. Carefully follow the steps outlined below and you’ll have Fire TV Guru up and running in no time.

  1. Open Kodi on your Fire TV Stick. If you need help installing Kodi, check out our guide to sideloading Fire TV apps.
  2. Click on the gear icon on the left side nav bar to enter the System menu.
  3. Go to File Manager > Add Source
  4. Click where it says <None> in the center of the screen, then type in the following URL exactly as it appears: http://firetvguru.info/fire
  5. Confirm the new source, then name the repository “firetvguru“.
  6. Go back to the Kodi main menu and select the Add-ons sub-menu.
  7. Click the open box icon at the top of the menu bar.
  8. Choose Install from Zip File, then scroll to select “firetvguru“.
  9. Install the file named repository.firetvguru.zip. It should be the only file on the list.
  10. Go back to the Add-ons menu and click the open box icon again.
  11. Choose Install from repository, then locate and click Fire TV Guru.
  12. Go to the Program add-ons folder and select the Fire TV Wizard and install it.
  13. When the wizard installation completes, go back to the main Kodi menu.
  14. Run the Fire TV Wizard.
  15. Enter the Builds folder. You’ll see a huge list of installation options for the Fire TV Guru build.
  16. Select the version you’re interested in. Either standard or lite will work just fine.
  17. Start the installation. It can take as long as 30 minutes to completely download, as the build is over 500 MB in size, and the servers are usually slow.
  18. Once the download completes the build will ask to restart Kodi. Do so right away.
  19. An intro video will play as soon as Kodi restarts. Then you’ll have full access to the Guru build, ready to stream!

What’s Included with Fire TV Guru Build

In addition to the Fire TV Guru’s sleek, Fire-friendly interface, the build also comes with a number of resources pre-installed and ready to stream. Some of the better add-ons include Not Sure, the incredibly diverse blockbuster movie streamer, along with combination TV and movie sources Uranus, Deathstreams, Incursion, Genesis Reborn, and Neptune.

Live TV and sports are both part of the Fire TV Guru build, as well, each sectioned off into their own categories. You’ll also find dedicated sections for kids’ content, music, and even a few add-ons dedicated to fitness and women’s programming.

Nova Build

Nova for Kodi is an incredibly lightweight build that’s filled with features Fire TV owners will love. It comes with a strong selection of streaming sources that provide just the right balance of movies, TV shows, sports, and live TV, allowing you to quickly get started with your Fire Stick entertainment. It also remains fast and responsive on low-powered devices, making it a good overall choice for Fire TV users.

How to Install the Nova Build

The Nova build is included in the Simple Build Wizard, which is part of The Little Guys repository. You’ll need to add these to your system before installing the build itself. Follow the steps below to do just that.

  1. Open Kodi on your local device and click the gear icon to enter the System menu.
  2. Go to File Manager > Add Source
  3. Click where it says <None>, then type in the following URL exactly as it appears: http://thelittleguysco.net/kodi/
  4. Name the new repository simplebuild and click OK
  5. Go back to the Kodi main menu and select Add-ons.
  6. Click the open box icon at the top of the menu bar, then choose Install from Zip File.
  7. Select the repo you just added by browsing for it by name.
  8. Open the file named plugin.program.SimpleBuildWizard-###.zip. It should be the only zip file in the directory.
  9. Go back to the Add-ons menu, click the open box icon, then choose Install from repository.
  10. Find and click Simple Builds repository.
  11. Choose Program add-ons and select the Simple Build Wizard.
  12. Install the wizard, run it, then select the Builds folder.
  13. Scroll until you see the Nova build on the installation list.
  14. Choose a Standard install, then wait for the build to download. This could take a while, as the build is over 300 MB.
  15. When the build completes Kodi will shut down. Open it again and Nova will be active and ready to stream.

What’s Included with Nova

The Nova build comes packaged with a lot of great streaming add-ons, including sources for movies, TV shows, live TV, fitness videos, and more. Some of the best features are built-in support for the Placenta streaming service and Covenant, two add-ons that will give you all the access to new and classic movies and TV series you need. There’s also Oculus, Trident, Deathstreams, and Strictly HD!

KodiMaster Lite

KodiMaster Lite is the place to go for popular content, everything from blockbuster movies to new TV shows, and a few extras like weather, sports, and movies for kids. The way KodiMaster assembles these add-ons makes it perfect for Fire TV. The menu is shoved to the bottom, the background features gorgeous hi-res screenshots that look great on your TV, and browsing content displays a ton of helpful information. KodiMaster makes it fun to just look through your library!

How to Install the KodiMaster Build

KodiMaster is included in the repository and wizard of the same name. The build itself comes in a few varieties, as well. We recommend KB Lite, as it’s nice and fast and works well with Fire TV. Follow the steps below to add everything you need to your system.

  1. Open Kodi on your Fire TV and select the gear icon to enter the System menu.
  2. Go to File Manager > Add Source
  3. Click where it says <None>, then type in the following URL: http://kodimaster.com/repo
  4. Name the new repository kodimaster and click OK
  5. Go back to the main menu and select Add-ons.
  6. Click the open box icon a then choose Install from Zip File.
  7. Select the repo by browsing for it by name.
  8. Open the file named kodimaster.repository-####.zip.
  9. Go back to the Add-ons menu, click the open box icon, then choose Install from repository.
  10. Find and click KodiMaster Repository.
  11. Choose Program add-ons and select the KodiMaster Wizard.
  12. Install the wizard, run it, then open up the Builds folder.
  13. Scroll until you see the KodiMaster builds on the installation list. KMB Lite is best for Fire TV devices.
  14. Choose a Standard install, then wait for the build to download.
  15. Kodi will ask to restart once the installation is complete, then your new skin will be active!

What Comes with KodiMaster

KodiMaster is largely focused on popular movies and new TV shows. You’ll find a wealth of streaming options at your disposal, including the popular add-ons Elysium, Bubbles, and Covenant, Exodus, and SALTS. Live TV is delivered via Bennu and UK Turk, two of the best Kodi add-ons for IPTV streams. There’s also a dedicated section for UK TV with British classics, Britcoms, and streams from the BBC iPlayer.

Conclusion

Got your Fire TV warmed up and ready to go? Installing a few good Kodi builds is a great way to gain instant access to a world of entertainment options. With one download you can start streaming movies, TV shows, foreign films, music, sports, and live TV. No need to chase down tons of different add-ons, just install one of the builds above, then enjoy your sleek and functional Fire TV!

Read Best Kodi Builds for Fire Stick and FireTV (Confirmed to Work in 2018_ by John Bardinelli on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to Watch Live TV on Kodi

VCRs, Tivo, DVD players, and eventually digital and internet broadcasting channels have revolutionized the way we watch television. The first big change was not having to rearrange our schedule to catch our favorite programs. On-demand content came next, allowing us to pick and choose what we watch whenever we’re free. There’s still something unique about watching live TV, though, and the development team behind Kodi knows just how we feel.

There are several methods to watch live TV on Kodi. The software itself comes with a few streaming and recording options, and you’ll find a few live TV add-ons for Kodi that do a great job, too. You can even watch live sports from your smartphone! Below we’ll discuss the best methods for watching live TV on your Kodi-enabled device.

Stay Safe on Kodi with a Good VPN

Kodi itself is fast, free, and completely legal to use. The open-source nature of the software means anyone can create new plug-in content, though, which allows for things like pirated movie streams and videos from questionable sources. You can never be sure where a file is hosted or whether or not it’s legal to watch in your country, making the very act of opening Kodi a red flag in the eyes of governments and ISPs.

The good news is you can protect yourself from these potential invasions of privacy by installing a good VPN. VPNs encrypt all of your online traffic, making it completely unreadable to third parties. Data is routed through the VPN’s non-local server network, too, which removes traces of your identity. With a VPN in place you’ll be able to stream any Kodi content you like without worrying about ISP throttling or data logging.

If you’re looking for the best VPN to use with Kodi, check out our recommendation below.

Top Kodi VPN – IPVanish

When you need both fast speeds and top notch security, IPVanish is the VPN to use. The service runs over 950 servers in 60 different countries, each one offering incredibly fast downloads around the world. Your data stays safe with 256-bit AES encryption, a zero logging policy on all traffic, DNS leak protection, and an automatic kill switch. You also get completely unmonitored traffic with IPVanish, allowing you full, private access to torrents, P2P networks, and Kodi add-ons, all with unlimited bandwidth!

Learn more about the benefits and capabilities of IPVanish by checking out our full IPVanish review.

IPVanish offers a 7-day money back guarantee which means you have a week to test it risk-free. Please note that Addictive Tips readers can save a massive 60% here on the IPVanish annual plan, taking the monthly price down to only $4.87/mo.

PVR, DVR, and Live TV

Live TV didn’t just disappear when the internet became popular. Services like Netflix and Hulu do a great job of replacing TV channels and similar content, but there are plenty of options available for streaming broadcast network channels to your home entertainment center.

Limitations of Live TV

Most live TV options are limited to broadcasts in your immediate area. If you live near a city, you’ll likely have a wealth of free digital broadcasts you can capture and record. If you don’t, or if your town doesn’t have a lot of TV stations nearby, your options will be limited.

Recording Live TV

A personal video recorder (PVR) and digital video recorder (DVR) are two terms that refer to essentially the same thing. The technology allows you to capture and save live broadcasts, including sports, news, and TV shows, from an open stream, store the content on a device, then access it later when you’re ready to watch. It essentially turns live content into on-demand content, making broadcast TV extremely convenient.

Hardware

Unless you’re accessing pure internet TV channels, you’ll need a separate piece of hardware to stream live TV. These boxes range from digital antennas to cable-like equipment, interfacing directly with your PC via capture card and pulling in content from over the air broadcasts.

The hardware required for live TV streaming isn’t expensive, and it usually doesn’t come with a monthly subscription, either. Once you purchase the equipment you can set things up to stream and record as you see fit.

IPTV

Internet Protocol television (IPTV) is wholly separate from the live TV streams discussed in this article. With IPTV you can capture, record, and watch content directly from the internet, no separate hardware required. It’s extremely convenient if you don’t own the right devices, but you usually won’t be able to access local programming like you would from an over-the-air digital broadcast.

Use Built-in Features to Watch Live TV on Kodi

A lot of Kodi users are surprised to find out that Kodi offers full live TV streaming features built into the software itself. You’ll need to set a few things up to get it to work, but before you know it you’ll be kicking back for some live broadcasts.

Step 1 – Requirements

Kodi can’t source live TV streams from the internet by default. To keep things legal, the software only interfaces with your streaming hardware, such as a TV tuner, digital antenna, or cable box. You’ll need a compatible device before setting Kodi up to capture and deliver your live streams.

Which hardware you buy is largely up to you. It’s worth noting that antennas seem to have the best results interfacing with Kodi. They’re limited to what digital channels are broadcast in your area, however. Cable streams are often encrypted, especially in the U.S. This means you need a PC TV tuner that supports decrypting, otherwise Kodi won’t be able to read the data.

Step 2 – Install Kodi Backend

Kodi is capable of recognizing and streaming live TV signals, but it needs what’s called a backend before it can turn them into watchable programming. We’ll be using NextPVR, as it’s one of the most popular ways to accomplish this.

Start by visiting the NextPVR website and downloading the program. Run the setup file to install it to your system, then open the Settings window (you may need to right click on the taskbar icon to do this). Look for the Devices section on the left. Find your TV tuner on the list and select it. If it appears multiple times under different types, choose ATSC for antennas or QAM for cable boxes.

Step 3 – Setting Up NextPVR Backend

Under the Devices section, click Device Setup at the bottom of the screen. A new window will open. Click Scan in the lower right and NextPVR will automatically check your device and its capabilities. Don’t be alarmed if this takes a minute or two to complete. When the scan is done click OK to save the list of located channels.

Now we’ll need to go through a few settings pages listed in the left sidebar. First, you’ll see an option named Channels. Click it, then click Update EPG. This will populate the shows guide so you can see which channels are broadcasting at any given moment.

Click the Decoders option. You’ll see a lot of dropdown boxes for renderers and decoders. If you’re using a newer version of Windows, switch as many of them as you can to Microsoft DTV-DVD Audio Decoder. This will give you the best possible playback without stuttering or lag. If you have your own decoders installed you can select them, as well.

Step 4 – Configure Optional Recording Settings

Before you save your settings and exit it’s a good idea to change where digital TV recordings are stored. You don’t have to do this if you don’t plan on recording shows, but it only takes a moment and can save you some hassle in the long run.

Click Recording in the left sidebar. Highlight where it says Default C:, then click Edit on the right. Browse to a different directory, preferably somewhere on a drive with lots of extra storage. Save these changes and exit the configurations menu.

Step 5 – Configuring Kodi

Now that your streaming hardware and backend are set up, it’s time to teach Kodi how to interact with everything.

Run Kodi and go to the System Settings menu by clicking the gear icon on the left. Choose the PVR & Live TV icon. Make sure the text at the bottom says “Standard”. If it doesn’t, click it until it does, then go to the General tab. Enable PVR sources by toggling the slider to the right. Kodi will prompt you to install the NextPVR add-on.

Once the NextPVR add-on is installed, you’re ready to go. Set any configuration options you like through the Kodi menu, then head back to the main menu. Choose the TV section, pick a channel, and start streaming.

DON’T FORGET: Use a VPN when streaming through Kodi. IPVanish gives our readers an exclusive discount of 60% and you’ll only pay $4.87 a month to keep your browsing safe and private.

Official Kodi Add-ons to Watch Live TV

If you don’t want to fuss with Kodi’s built-in live TV features, you can always check out a few add-ons. Below are a few official and legal programs you can install on Kodi that interface with live TV streams from your hardware. For more suggestions, including unofficial add-ons, check out our guide for the best Kodi add-ons for live TV.

Zattoo Box

Zattoo Box is one of the best official add-ons for live TV streams. With it you can access your Zattoo library on any Kodi device, allowing you to stream content with very little effort, all in glorious HD quality. Zattoo itself is a live TV service that offers a handful of free channels along with premium paid content. You can watch over 200 channels without a subscription, and you can gain over 100 more by signing up.

To use the Zattoo Box add-on with Kodi, start by creating an account at the Zattoo website.  Once you have login credentials, follow the steps below to install the add-on to your system.

  1. Open Kodi on your device and select Add-ons.
  2. Click the open box icon at the top of the menu bar.
  3. Choose Install from Repository.
  4. Select Kodi Add-on repository, the official repo that comes with the software.
  5. Scroll down to Video add-ons.
  6. Select Zattoo Box from the bottom of the list and install it.
  7. Set your username and password in the Zattoo add-ons configuration screen.
  8. Launch the add-on and start streaming live TV.

Tablo

Tablo is a DVR device built for cordcutters. The hardware lets you stream and record over the air TV to a wide variety of devices, including Kodi. All you need is the Tablo box, access to the internet, and an inexpensive Tablo subscription, that’s it. The device does all the work for you, functioning as a perfect replacement for expensive cable TV.

Tablo’s Kodi add-on neatly interfaces with the box to deliver all your live and recorded content directly to the media center. Once you have the hardware and an active Tablo account, simply follow the steps below to install the add-on.

  1. Open Kodi and select Add-ons from the left menu.
  2. Click the open box icon at the top of the menu bar.
  3. Choose Install from Repository.
  4. Select Kodi Add-on repository, the official repo that comes with the software.
  5. Scroll down to Video add-ons.
  6. Select Tablo from the list and install it.
  7. Launch the add-on from the add-ons menu. You will be guided through a brief setup before being able to stream your Tablo library.

Conclusion

Nothing beats sitting down in front of your favorite device and watching some live TV. You never know what will come on next. Sometimes your favorite shows, sometimes your local sports team. No matter where you live or what device you own, Kodi can help you get live TV content.

One of the best ways to stream Kodi to your TV is to install it on an Amazon Fire TV Stick. You’ll have access to everything Kodi has to offer, including add-ons, live sports streams, TV shows, and movies. If Fire TV isn’t your thing, you can also install Kodi on an Apple TV to get things up and running.

Read How to Watch Live TV on Kodi by John Bardinelli on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

Kodi Alternatives: What Other Options You Have for Streaming Media

Kodi is one of the most popular pieces of software for users to organise, display, and view their media files. With support for many platforms and a flexible open source approach, Kodi has made a name for itself as the media centre of choice for many years. However, with many recent shutdowns of Kodi add-on repositories and increasing legal issues about the use of add-ons to stream copyrighted content, some users are now looking for an alternative to Kodi. In this article we’ll talk about why you might want to move away from using Kodi and then recommend our top Kodi alternatives so you can organise and stream your media from the device of your choice.

Why Use An Alternative To Kodi?

Kodi is a terrific piece of software, and it’s one that we love here at Addictive Tips. Originally designed as media centre software for organising and displaying your audio and video files, the real strength of Kodi is in its flexibility. You can customise the software in all sorts of ways like installing skins to change the look of the media centre, or installing add-ons to give you new functions like streaming video. The software is free and is available for a big range of platforms, including low spec devices like Amazon Fire TV sticks.

However, there are some issues with Kodi. The biggest problem is that the software has gained a reputation for being linked to piracy. Although the software itself is fully legal to use and does not contain any pirated material, some of the add-ons available for Kodi allow users to stream movies, TV shows, or music for free. Because of this, Kodi has become the target of many anti-piracy measures. This means that often Kodi add-ons will stop working at some point, and the repositories where you download the add-ons are frequently forced to close.

All of this means that it can be a pain for Kodi users to find the add-ons that they want and to use the software consistently. Of course, if you just want to use the basic Kodi software with no add-ons then it still works great as a media organisation system. But if you’re looking for a way to stream content as well as to organise what’s on your hard drive, then you might consider using a Kodi alternative instead.

Key Features You Want In A Media Centre

If you’re a Kodi user, then you’ll already know some of the features that you want in your media centre software. But if you’re new to media centres and you’ve just been keeping your files organised in folders on your hard drive or using a streaming service like Netflix, then you might not know what features you need. Here are a few suggestions for features to look for when you’re choosing a media centre:

  • Support for a wide variety of file types. You want to be able to play back all of your video and audio files, so you want software that supports all of the formats that you use – which could include .avi, .mpeg, .mp3, .wav, .mp4, .mkv, and more.
  • Support for streaming. Most people these days are using streaming services to watch video and listen to music, like Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, and so on. Some media centres let you integrate streaming from these sources.
  • New streaming sources. Another option is to use grey-legal streaming sources like you’ll find in many Kodi add-ons. These let you watch movies and TV shows for free, but using them may carry some legal risks. It’s up to you to decide if that’s something you’re interested in.
  • Ability to add new functions. One of the great things about Kodi is that you can customise the software by adding the new features that you want. Most media centres, however, are not so flexible and don’t let you add new functions.
  • Available for different platforms. You might install media centre software on your PC, games console, phone, or smart TV. You’ll need to find software which supports your platform of choice.

Why Use A VPN With Media Centre Software

Before we get into details of the Kodi alternatives, we should discuss the importance of using a VPN for your media centre. Many Kodi alternatives, like Kodi itself, have options available which you can install to stream media like TV shows and movies for free. This can get you into legal trouble if your ISP finds out that you are streaming content using illegal services.

For this reason, we recommend that media centre users install a VPN. This will encrypt all of the traffic coming from your media centre so that your ISP and law enforcement cannot see what sites you are visiting or whether you are streaming or downloading content. This helps to keep you safe when you use your media centre and to avoid and legal issues.

IPVanish

IPVanish is a strong choice for users who are looking for more advanced options in their VPN. As well as fast connections and good security, the IPVanish software shows you a detailed look at all of the data flowing in and out of your device through its graphical user interface. There are options within the advanced section of the software for advanced functions like a kill switch, DNS leak protection, periodic IP address change to keep your IP address as hidden as possible, and DNS configuration so that you can set up your own DNS servers if you want.

The connections from IPVanish are really speedy and are perfect for media centre users thanks to their speeds. There is also excellent security including the use of 256-bit encryption and a no logging policy. The server network is large and covers more than 1000 servers available in 60 different countries, making it easy to get around region locks. The software is available for devices running Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Android.

If you are a regular reader of AddictiveTips, you’ll know that we recommend IPVanish as the top VPN provider for Kodi. Our recommendation similarly stands for each of the following Kodi alternatives listed below. Read our full IPVanish review here.

IPVanish offers a 7-day money back guarantee which means you have a week to test it risk-free. Please note that Addictive Tips readers can save a massive 60% here on the IPVanish annual plan, taking the monthly price down to only $4.87/mo.

Top Alternatives To Kodi

Streaming services offer much, but often fail to deliver. When the UX leaves something to be desired or the quality of the streams themselves, it can be frustrating to wade outside of the familiar waters of monolithic platforms like Kodi. Luckily, we’ve done the hard work for you, and have rounded up the best alternatives available.

Terrarium TV

Terrarium TV is a newer software that’s available for Android and is similar to Kodi in many ways, but somewhat simplified. Instead of having to install add-ons, it comes ready to use with the ability to watch a whole lot of TV shows and some movies too. When you open up the app, you immediately see thumbnails for all the most popular current shows, and you just have to click to start watching.

Like other grey-legal streaming services, Terrarium TV does not actually host any of the videos that it shows. It just links to other sites on which episodes of the show are hosted, and organises these links into an easy to use format. This means that the episodes do not always stream fully reliably and can have buffering issues because the hosting site is too slow. However, there are advantages of this method like the common availability of high definition videos, even up to 1080p.

There isn’t a lot of flexibility in Terrarium TV as you can’t modify the software or add new features. However, if you’re on Android and you want a free, easy to use TV streaming service which doesn’t require any technical knowledge or set up, then Terrarium TV is a great choice.

Find it at https://terrariumtvappdownloads.com/

Plex

Plex is a big name in media player software, and it’s popular for a good reason. It has both a free and a paid version so you can choose the level of investment that you want to make based on your particular needs. The software is available for a range of platforms including Windows, Mac OS X, iOS, and Android, as well as some support for Linux, Windows phone, Roku, Android TV, Xbox, and PlayStation.

Like Kodi, Plex is terrific for playing the media that you already have stored on your hard drive and it operates through an attractive and well designed user interface. You can add “channels”, which is Plex’s name for add-ons, that give you new functionalities like streaming video and audio content from various sources.

The real unique selling point of Plex is its server function. You can set up Plex as a media server, for example on your desktop at home. Then, when you’re out and about you can use Plex on your phone and connect to your Plex server at home. This means that you can watch any of the videos from your desktop on your phone, even if you’re elsewhere in the country or in the world. This requires a bit of technical knowledge to set up but is a great function for users who have large media libraries that they want to be able to access from anywhere.

Find it at https://www.plex.tv/

Streamio

A newer but also popular all in one media centre is Streamio. It is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux, and can be used to both play videos from your hard drive and to stream live TV services. There are official add-ons available to watch services like YouTube and WatchHub, and unofficial add-ons which are developed by the community to access services like Netflix and Twitch. The add-ons have great potential to add new functions to the software, however, currently there are not many of these add-ons available.

One nice feature of Streamio is that it makes it easy to discover new shows or movies to watch, as the content can be organised by category, genre, rating, and so on. There are also neat features like notifications when a new episode of a show you’re watching comes out, tracking of your progress watching a show or film, and recommendations for new things to watch based on your viewing habits.

Streamio has the potential to be a great replacement for Kodi, however, currently it is still in its early stages and can only play content from a much more limited range of services than is possible through Kodi add-ons.

Find it at https://www.streamio.com/streaming/

Popcorn Time

If you love the speed and wide range of content that is available through torrents but want the convenience of a user interface that lets you stream movies and TV shows, then you can try out Popcorn Time. This is a cross between a BitTorrent client and a media centre streaming service, as it uses torrents to stream the content that you want. The experience is very slick and tends to operate really well, especially for watching popular new shows and movies. There are many Popcorn Time users out there so you’ll usually have no problem connecting to seeders for whatever you want to watch.

The disadvantage of using Popcorn Time is that using torrents to view copyrighted content like movies and TV shows is extremely risky. Most ISPs keep a careful eye out for people using torrents on their networks and will quickly detect if you are using torrents to access copyrighted content. You could then be hit with a fine or be kicked off your ISP’s network. If you’re going to use torrents through Popcorn Time, it’s absolutely essential that you use a VPN to protect yourself.

Find it at https://popcorn-time.to/

Emby

Emby is an open source project which acts as a media server and media player. The media server software is available for Windows and Linux and the player software can be accessed using either a web interface or through a plethora of devices like Android, iOS, sRoku, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Apple TV, some smart TVs and some video game consoles. Like Plex, this is a great solution if you have lots of media files on your desktop machine at home that you want to be able to access from your mobile device while you are travelling.

There is a free version of Emby, but you’ll need to pay a subscription fee for access to the more advanced features. The advanced features you can access include the use of live TV, a variety of parental controls, cloud sync to keep your media backed up, and mobile sync to allow you offline access to your files. There isn’t an option to install new add-ons, but if you just want a way to serve and access your existing media files then Emby is worth a try.

Find it at https://emby.media/

MediaPortal

Finally, one similar program to Kodi that you might want to use is MediaPortal. This software for Windows is designed to turn your PC into a fully HTPC experience. It is particularly good for users who want live TV options and who want to be able to record shows like a TiVo. If you use a TV tuner and you want to find media centre software that is compatible, then MediaPortal is your best choice.

Although the software itself is only available for Windows, there are remote control apps available for iOS and Android, so you can use your phone as a remote for your PC. This is perfect if you have a setup with your PC plugged into a TV screen and you want to be able to watch from your sofa. There are also a small number of plugins available for the software that let you do things like watch YouTube videos or listen to the radio, and there are a selection of skins so that you can change the way that the interface looks to your taste.

Find it at https://www.team-mediaportal.com/

Conclusion

The Kodi media centre software is terrific, being both functional and flexible with the option to install add-ons. These add-ons turn the Kodi software from something that simply plays local media into a fully fledged all in one system that can play from streaming services and let you watch new movies and TV shows. However, the popularity of these add-ons has also lead to many anti-piracy lawsuits and legal threats against add-on developers and the repositories that host them. This means that it is less convenient to use Kodi than it used to be, as add-ons and repositories often stop working.

For this reason, many people are looking for an alternative to Kodi. Depending on your particular needs, you might try out any of the alternatives that we’ve suggested above. Some are compatible with a wide range of operating systems, while others only work on a specific platform like Android or Windows. Like Kodi, many of these alternatives can also be customised by installing add-ons, however, the selection of add-ons available is smaller than in Kodi. Others have unique features of their own like media server options so you can access your media files even when you’re travelling.

Have you tried out any of these media centres? How was your experience with them? Do you think you’ll switch over from Kodi to one of these programs instead? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Read Kodi Alternatives: What Other Options You Have for Streaming Media by Georgina Jones on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

Best Third Party Controllers for Fire TV Gaming

Fire TV is more than just a movie streaming device. With it you can access a surprising number of games, everything from casual puzzle titles to full-on 3D experiences. Downloading games is easy, but have you ever tried playing one with that tiny little remote? It’s not so much fun, which is why third party controllers are where it’s at.

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 1

Secure Gaming on Fire TV with a VPN

Locking down your information and keeping it safe is getting harder as the years go by. New laws are constantly being passed that chip away at online freedoms, allowing companies to spy on our activity, record our information, even sell it to the highest bidder.

You can keep yourself safe from these invasions of privacy by installing a reliable VPN. Virtual private networks encrypt your data before it leaves your home network, making it impossible for anyone to see who you, what you’re downloading, or what videos you’re streaming. It’s the perfect way to stay safe on any device, and they work like a charm on Fire TV, as well.

1. ExpressVPN – Fastest VPN

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 2 -ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN has some of the fastest server speeds in the industry. Each time you connect you’ll be able to stream HD and 4K content without any issue, no matter which server you log into. On top of that, ExpressVPN keeps your data secure with 256-bit AES encryption, a zero-logging policy on traffic, DNS requests, and IP addresses, and both an automatic kill switch and DNS leak protection. Best of all, you can install ExpressVPN directly from the Amazon appstore, no sideloading required. All plans are backed by a 30-day money back guarantee.

2. IPVanish – Perfect for Fire TV

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 3 -IPVanish

IPVanish has all the right elements to make it a spectacular VPN for Fire TV. Your data is kept safe with DNS leak protection and an automatic kill switch, along with a zero traffic logging policy and 256-bit AES encryption on all data. IPVanish also offers a stunning 950 servers in 60 countries for fast access around the world, and you can install it directly from the appstore. All plans are backed by a 7-day money back guarantee.

How to Choose the Best Third Party Controller

Fire TV only lets you pair up to seven devices at once. This includes any remotes and remote apps you’ve used in the past. While most users never reach the limit, if you intend on trying out a lot of gamepads, you might run into problems. That’s why it’s best to choose the best device before taking the plunge.

Pairing Game Controllers

Before you can use your game controller you’ll need to pair it with your Fire TV. Amazon has made this a painless process, all you really have to do is make sure the controller is turned on, then get the Fire TV to search for open connections. Follow the instructions below to pair your gamepad in just a few seconds.

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 4 -Pair gamepad

To pair your game controller, turn it on and have it ready while your Fire TV boots up. Go to Settings from the main menu, then select Controllers & Bluetooth Devices. Pick the Game Controllers option (shown above). Now choose Add New Game Controller. Hold the home button on the gamepad for about ten seconds, then the pairing will automatically complete.

Some gamepads may have alternate pairing methods you’ll need to follow. For example, you might have to hold a different combination of buttons while the Fire TV detects the bluetooth signal. You’ll follow the same instructions above as far as the Fire device is concerned. When it comes time to get your gamepad to broadcast, follow the manufacturer’s pairing instructions.

Wireless vs Wired

The vast majority of controllers you’ll see that offer Fire TV compatibility will be wireless. This is because only the standalone Fire TV device offers a USB port. The Fire Stick doesn’t have that option, which means if that’s what you own, you have to use bluetooth or Wi-Fi connections, there’s no other option.

If you have a set top Fire TV box you can often get better compatibility with USB plug-in gamepads. They’re a little easier to pair, and you’re not likely to run into any connectivity issues since they’re bound by a physical cable. As long as you don’t mind dealing with a wire stretching across your living room, you’re set, though bluetooth gamepads are not a bad option by any means.

App-Based Controllers

It’s possible to download bluetooth apps to separate Android devices and use them as a controller for your Fire TV. These gamepads have a terrible reputation for being unreliable, however. Connections fail, pairings are fraught with issues, and buttons sometimes fail to work. It may be tempting to try out a third party app controller, but at the end of the day you’ll be much happier sticking with a real gamepad.

Amazon’s Fire TV Gamepad

Amazon makes a perfectly serviceable gamepad that’s 100% compatible with its Fire TV devices. Why would you go with a third party solution? Two reasons: extra features and improved comfort. Amazon’s controller isn’t the best when it comes to smart design. You’ll find lots of Fire-centric media buttons to utilize, but at the end of the day you can get better gamepads by going third party. They’re also often cheaper than Amazon’s official hardware and can work with tons of other devices, which is always a bonus.

Controller Styles

In our selections below you’ll note two listed styles for Fire TV gamepads: PlayStation and Xbox 360. This indicates the overall layout and design of the third party accessory. PlayStation-like gamepads put the analog sticks in the center and keep a flat dogbone kind of style. Xbox gamepads opt for the winged palm design and shift the left analog stick up to be easier to reach. Which style you prefer is entirely up to you.

Best Third-Party Controllers for Fire TV

Download your favorite Fire TV apps and clear your afternoon, it’s time to get some serious game playing done!

Mad Catz C.T.R.L.R

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 5 -Madcatz

If you can get over the painful amount of effort required to look at this controller’s name, you’ll find a surprisingly solid third-party gamepad that offers just about all the features you could want. Mad Catz is an experienced accessories developer with hundreds of products for dozens of devices. The company’s Fire TV offerings combine all the features you want in a controller, making it possible to ditch your remote entirely in favor of this bad boy.

The Mad Catz C.T.R.L.R is laid out like an Xbox 360 controller. You’ve got two analog sticks, a decent d-pad, four face buttons, and two sets of trigger buttons on the top. The most interesting feature are the media buttons Mad Catz included at the top of the device. You can use these to play, pause, mute, fast forward, or rewind videos on your Fire TV, no need to pick up the remote.

Logitech Gamepad F710

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 6 -Logitech

Logitech’s gamepads are well-known in the accessories community. The F710 works with a huge number of devices, everything from gaming consoles to PCs, laptops, tablets, and other Android-powered hardware. While it wasn’t specifically made to run on Fire TV, you can get a surprising amount of use out of the accessory, especially if you own multiple compatible devices.

The Logitech Gamepad F710 sports a PlayStation controller-like layout with a d-pad and face buttons mirrored on the sides, two analog sticks in the center, and trigger buttons on the top and back. There are no Fire TV-specific options or even a home button to use, but the controller pairs easily with Fire TV and is great for quick, simple gaming sessions.

Note: Because the Logitech Gamepad F710 connects to Fire TV using a USB dongle, you can only use it with an actual Fire TV, not Fire Stick. This is simply because the Fire Stick doesn’t offer a USB plug.

Nyko PlayPad Pro

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 7 -Nyko

Peripherals maker Nyko was quick to roll out its Fire TV compatible controller once Fire TV gaming picked up some steam. The PlayPad Pro copies the layout and style of Amazon’s official gamepad, opting for simplicity over crazy or complicated features. You get a straightforward layout with two analog sticks, four face buttons, and two sets of trigger buttons on top. A home button lets you get back to the Fire TV’s main screen at any time, and you can do basic navigation using the d-pad or analog sticks.

Apart from its relatively low price and simplicity, the Nyko PlayPad Pro doesn’t offer a lot of tempting features. It’s great if you need a budget controller for simple games, however, just as long as you don’t mind keeping your voice remote nearby for movie streaming.

Baile Wireless Game Controller

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 8 -Baile wireless

When you’re in the market for a fast and cheap gamepad and don’t want to fuss with any crazy features, Baile’s dogbone-style controller is the way to go. The no-frills device offers a good set of features for gaming on multiple devices, including Android TV and Fire TV. A d-pad rocker, four face buttons, two analog sticks, and two sets of trigger buttons give you everything you need to control your games. It’s perfectly designed for fast-paced action and fighting games, too, all thanks to the analog and rocker layouts. If staying within a budget is top priority, you can’t go wrong with Baile’s gamepad.

Evolved Dimensions Motion Gamepad

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 9 -Evolved gamepad

Evolved Dimensions has a unique take on the Fire TV controller. The device has 10 buttons, two analog sticks, and a rocker d-pad, all built in a PlayStation-like layout that’s perfect for action, fighting, and 3D games. The selling feature is how easily your Android or Fire TV device can recognize and pair with the controller. Most users claim the device simply syncs right up, no need to mess with configurations or anything like that. Fire TV users will need to add it as a bluetooth device, not a dedicated gamepad, then you’re ready to play.

Rii i8+ Mini

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 10 -Rii i8 mini

Sometimes a couple of analog sticks and a d-pad just isn’t enough. If you need a PC-like interface for your Fire TV, Rii has an intriguing solution with the i8+. This full-featured device has a couple dozen buttons splayed out on the face, everything from a full finger keyboard to media buttons, a d-pad, and a touch pad. You can pair it with your Fire TV and use it with a variety of games, including some that need touch screen inputs.

Using the Rii i8+ can be a bit cumbersome at first. It’s not an ideal fit for heavy action-based games, but it’s got just the right amount of features for slower, more control-intensive experiences like RPGs and some casual titles. Better still, you can use the keyboard to actually type things into your Fire TV, which we all know can be frustrating with that little pack-in remote.

  • Price: $19.75
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth
  • Style: Mouse and keyboard
  • Extras: Works with a variety of devices, includes full finger keyboard for typing.
  • Get It: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WQG6A8C/

SaharaMicro Wireless Game Controller

Best Third Party Game Controllers Fire TV 11 -SaharaMicro gamepad

SaharaMicro’s wireless gamepad keeps it simple. It features all the basic buttons you need, including two analog sticks and two sets of trigger buttons, and it has a large home button top center for exiting applications with ease. Pairing is nice and straightforward, and the range is a little wider than some devices, extending out to almost 30 feet. When you combine this high usability with a budget-friendly price, it’s hard to say no to SaharaMicro’s simple Fire TV gamepad offering.

Conclusion

Getting the most out of your Fire TV and Fire Stick devices meaning using them for more than just movie streams. With the right third party controller you can play some incredible games on the system, including some of the top casual and indie releases of recent years! Best of all, gamepads are inexpensive and easy to use, making them a must-have accessory for anyone who wants to play Fire TV games.

Read Best Third Party Controllers for Fire TV Gaming by John Bardinelli on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter