Kodi Apple TV support may not be official, but there is a way to get the world’s most powerful streaming software on tvOS right now. Here’s everything you need to know about setting up Apple TV with Kodi media player, and how you can get started with it right now.
For as long as the Apple Inc. brand has existed, the company has been driven by the mindset to create consumer technology that stands apart. From the Apple II desktop computer that broke the tech world in ways no other computer in its time could, to the revolutionary Apple iPhone which continues to be one of the most successful inventions by the Cupertino company till date – Apple has been the epicenter of some of the resounding feats of personalized technology ever created.
The release of Apple TV in the year 2007 was the brand’s entry into the home entertainment space, bringing the simplicity of online entertainment streaming to people’s homes, and it certainly was ahead of its time. This was the same time when open-source media streaming program called XBMC, now known as Kodi, was gaining popularity. In the world of entertainment, Kodi media player has been one such driving force, which was created as a non-profit software to streamline media consumption. However, instead of creating a profiteering business around consumer market, Kodi is a free-for-all community that contributes openly to form a globally accessible streaming platform.
Kodi Apple TV Guide – Everything you need to know
Apple TV is designed to be a full-blown media streaming center that revolves around the closed-environment ideology on which all Apple products are based. From the MacBook running Mac OS X to the iPhone and iPad on iOS, Apple TV also comes with its very own proprietary operating system deemed as tvOS. Since the moto of Apple is essentially opposite to that of Kodi media player, it seems like two worlds colliding when you consider installing that open-source media streaming platform on a streamer device that isn’t intended for it.
Since Apple has made changes not just to the hardware, but also to the software of the Apple TV devices over the years, the ability to perform the Kodi Apple TV setup isn’t the same for each of the variants. We’ve deconstructed the process of setting up the most popular media streaming platform on Apple TV, and here’s everything you need to do to unleash your entertainment experience on the big screen.
Kodi Apple TV 1st Generation Setup
Apple TV First Generation may have been discontinued for almost a decade now, but it hasn’t been devoid from support for the Kodi media player. When it comes to the installation process, all you need to get started is around 1GB of available disk space on the Apple TV storage, along with a USB flash drive which puts up the Kodi media player on to the streamer.
- Make sure that you have upgraded your Apple TV 1 tvOS version to 3.0.2 in case you’re still using the previous older version.
- You need to then fetch the OSMC (Open Source Media Center) installer by using the download link given here.
- Once the installation process for OSMC completes, open the app on the Apple TV. Remember, you will receive a warning alert on the screen, since OSMC is not officially licensed to be used with the Apple TV.
- Plug the USB flash drive into your computer, select ‘Apple TV’ from OSMC’s menu screen, and hit the Enter button.
- Select the latest version of OSMC available and then press the Enter button.
- You will be able to see a list of download options on the next screen. Select the ‘SD card’ option from the options and then hit the Enter button.
- Now go ahead and choose the location of your USB-DISK, approve the user agreement box and wait as OSMC begins downloading on your USB flash drive.
- Once the installation process of OSMC is completed, unplug the USB flash drive from your computer and then plug it into your Apple TV.
- Turn on your Apple TV and wait as OSMC will begin installing it automatically.
Open Source Media Center (OSMC), which is a Linux-based media player for Kodi, will now be running on your Apple TV 1, allowing you to make the most of the online entertainment world.
Kodi Apple TV 2nd Generation Setup
Although the OSMC platform for the very first Apple TV was a step in the right direction, it did not support the later versions of Kodi media player that were released. Apple TV 2nd Generation was one of the first streaming devices out there to be able to run Kodi in its full capacity. However, after the device was discontinued, so was the software support for Kodi on it, which the reason you can only run older versions such as Kodi Helix on it.
Note: The process of installing Kodi media player on an Apple TV 2 requires a computer running Mac OS X software.
- Using a USB Type-C cable, hook up your Mac computer to your Apple TV 2 device.
- Open the terminal window on your Mac and enter the following code – ssh [email protected]. Note: Replace the IP address ‘192.168.3.4’ with the IP address of your Apple TV.
- Enter the password of your Mac computer when prompted.
- Now go ahead and enter the commands into the Mac terminal:
apt-get install wget
wget -0- http://apt.awkwardtv.org/awkwardtv.pub | apt-key add –
echo ?deb http://apt.awkwardtv.org/ stable main? > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/awkwardtv.list
echo ?eb http://mirrors.kodi.tv/apt/atv2 ./? > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/xbmc.list
apt-get install org.xbmc.kodi-atv2
Once the process is completed, you can connect the Apple TV back to your HDTV and check to see if the Kodi media player is working optimally.
Kodi Apple TV 4th & 5th Generation Setup
If you own an Apple TV 3rd Generation, then you’re out of luck, since it is the only variant of the media streamer that is not supported by Kodi. The only way to make Kodi work on an Apple TV 3 is by running it on a Mac OS X device or an iOS device, and then using AirPlay to cast the display to the big screen on the Apple TV. However, if you own an Apple TV 4th and 5th Generation, or the latest Apple TV 4K, there are a handful of methods for you to try out and get Kodi media player working.
- Apple TV 4th or 5th Generation, or the latest Apple TV 4K.
- tvOS version 11 or higher installed.
- File for the latest version of Kodi media player for iOS (DEB File (ARM64).
- Cydia Impactor tool (Download link).
- iOS App Signer and Xcode.
Method No.1: Apple TV Kodi setup using Cydia Impactor
In order to install the Kodi media player on your Apple TV, you need to begin by converting the DEB file package into an IPA package.
- Start off by ensuring that you have an app installed on your computer that can unzip files. Mac OS X users can fetch the Unarchiver or Entropy app, while Windows users can choose to use the 7-Zip or WinRAR app.
- Start off by using any of these file unzippers to unzip the DEB Kodi media player file.
- Once you have unzipped the DEB file, go ahead and unzip the file that is named ‘data.tar’.
- Now you need access to the folder named ‘data’, then open the ‘applications’ folder and yet another folder called ‘Kodi.app’ will appear.
- Start off by creating a new folder next to ‘Kodi.app’ and simply name it ‘XYZ’.
- You need to drag the ‘Kodi.app’ folder and drop it into the ‘XYZ’ folder you created earlier.
- Now you need to create a new ZIP file. Windows users can simply right-click on the ‘XYZ’ folder that was created in the previous step and select the unzip app to create a ZIP file. Mac users can right-click on the folder and select the ‘Compress’ option to create a ZIP file.
- Mac users will have the file format of the compressed file as a ZIP by default, whereas Windows users will have to manually make sure that the compressed file format is ZIP.
- Both Windows and Mac users must right-click on the ZIP file and rename it as ‘Kodi.ipa’.
Once you have successfully created the Kodi IPA file, you can begin the installation process, which doesn’t take more than a couple of more minutes.
- Begin by connecting your Apple TV to your computer and if the iTunes app opens automatically, then make sure to close it.
- Go ahead and open the Cydia Impactor app.
- Locate the Kodi.IPA file that you had previously created to drag and drop it into the Cydia Impactor window.
- You will now be asked to enter your Apple ID, so go ahead and provide it.
- Cydia Impactor will then begin the process to install the Kodi app on your Apple TV.
- Once the process is complete, feel free to disconnect Apple TV from the computer.
- Now connect your Apple TV to the big screen and start using Kodi.
Method No.2: Kodi Apple TV set up with Xcode
Since Xcode is the official app development software for all things Apple, you will need a Mac OS X computer to get Kodi working with this method.
- Hook up your Apple TV to your Mac OS X computer with the help of a USB-C or USB-A cable.
- Download and launch the latest version of Xcode on your computer, and click on the button that says “Create a new Xcode project” from the main menu of the application.
- Using the sidebar on the left, choose the ‘tvOS’ option, and then the ‘Application’ option.
- Now select the option for ‘Single View Application’ from the right side of the screen.
- You then need to specify options such as giving the app a product name along with an organization name and then fill the Bundle Identifier, after which, you can press the ‘Next’ button.
- As the Xcode program loads, you might end up with an error that says the software can’t find a “matching provisioning profile”. Press the ‘Fix Issue’ button, which should resolve this issue.
- You will now be asked to enter your Apple ID, and although being a developer is a bonus, a regular Apple ID should work too. Pick your Apple ID from the drop-down menu and click the ‘Choose’ button to proceed. The error should now be resolved on Xcode and you will be redirected to the main menu.
- Now go ahead and open the iOS App Signer you installed using the link given above. You will be asked to enter details into multiple fields, starting with the first one named ‘Input File’, where you need to select the Kodi DEB file. For the fields such as the ‘Signing Certificate’ and ‘Provisioning Profile’, you can use the default values as it is.
- Browse for the section that reads the ‘App Display Name’ field at the bottom of the screen, type in the name ‘Kodi’ and then click the ‘Start’ button.
- The App Signer should now be able to unpack the data in the Kodi DEB file and create a new IPA file as a result.
- Head to the Xcode app, click on the ‘Windows’ button, and then choose the ‘Device’ menu.
- From the list of devices appearing on the left, pick your Apple TV and then choose the ‘+’ tab under the ‘Installed Apps’ section.
- Make your way to locate the newly created IPA file within iOS Signer to open it.
- Once the process of installing Kodi has finished, you can feel free to disconnect Apple TV, attach it to your TV and get Kodi running on the big screen.
You may not be a big fan of the closed-loop that Apple dictates on the software side when it comes to interconnectivity, but there’s no denying that all Apple products are popular for a good reason. Apple TV has enjoyed a permanent place in the living rooms of millions of consumers all around the world, and while the majority of them may not feel the need to tinker with the software that comes pre-installed, running Kodi on Apple TV requires you to roll up your sleeves and do the dirty work.
Are you among the Apple TV users who is rushing to get Kodi media player working on the big screen, or do you think that all of the work simply isn’t worth the hassle? Be sure to let us know what you think about the entire ordeal in the comments section right down below.