Want to plug in Kodi on Chromecast and supercharge your big screen entertainment? Here’s everything you need to know about running the open-source Kodi media player on Google’s media streamer.
The amount of progress that the tech industry has experienced in the past few decades hasn’t been enjoyed by any other industry out there. It all started off with satellite TV connections and big names in the cable business setting down connections for homes and offices all across the region. However, the means of enjoying entertainment has drastically shifted, with consumers no longer wanting to be subjugated by their cable companies. This uproar has led to a shift in the traditional way we enjoy entertainment, leading to the cord-cutting era where Smart HDTVs and media streaming devices rule.
One of the frontrunners in promoting online media streaming has been Google, which has not only popularized video sharing through YouTube but also invented the Chromecast streaming device. Designed to be tiny, easily affordable, and efficient at the same time, Chromecast has become a core essence of the smart home environment that Google has created with interconnected technology. BY simply plugging in a Chromecast into any HDTV, you can grant it a window into the wide world of the internet, which includes the unchartered territory of the Kodi media player.
Kodi on Chromecast – Made for each other
Back in the day when Apple was charging hundreds of dollars to its customers for the Apple TV, Google gained the higher ground by releasing the Chromecast in 2013. Since then, the device has been updated to support 4K resolution with the price still saying close to what it was during its initial launch, which is one of the reasons that it has gained tremendous popularity among the consumers. The similar motto of giving power back to the people is what led to the creation of Kodi, the world’s most popular open-source media streaming platform with millions of active users.
Android OS is built on a variant of Linux, which is natively supported by the Kodi media player. This makes it easier for developers to build the official Kodi app for Android, but when it comes to Chromecast support, things do get choppy. Kodi media player app does is not officially supported Chromecast, which means that while enjoying entertaining content on Kodi, you will not be able to see a “Cast” button as you do on YouTube or other popular streaming platforms.
Guide to run Kodi on Chromecast
Google Chromecast is different from most Android streaming devices in the way that it does not actually run any apps by itself. The device basically creates a wireless bridge between your mobile phone and the apps installed on it that support Chromecast. Since Kodi media player does not come with official Google Chromecast support, you can’t simply open the Kodi app on your phone and mirror it to the big screen.
Just because there isn’t an official way to use your Google Chromecast and run Kodi media player on your device, doesn’t mean we can’t help you find a way around the hurdle. Fortunately, there isn’t just one, but a handful of methods that you can implement to run Kodi media player on your Google Chromecast streamer.
Method 1: Run Kodi using the Google Home app
While you may not get the “Cast” button when using your Android mobile phone or tablet to connect with Chromecast for Kodi, there is still an official way around it. A nifty feature of the official Google Home app is the ability to cast the entire screen of your Android phone or tablet on to the big screen with a connected Chromecast device. This allows you to mirror the display of your device on the HDTV and then run the Kodi media player on your Android device.
- On your Android phone or tablet, head over to the Google Home app.
- Select the three-line menu icon on the top-left side of the screen and wait as the side menu appears.
- From the side menu, select the “Cast screen/audio” button from the list.
- The display screen of your Android device will now be mirrored on the TV screen.
- Head back to the home screen and launch the Kodi app.
With the Kodi media player running on the big screen, you will now also be able to cast the audio from your Android device to the HDTV screen. However, there is a downside to this method that your phone needs to keep the playback going in order to mirror the screen. If you turn off the screen of your Android phone or tablet, the playback on the big screen will pause too.
Method 2: Advanced Method
Whether you’re using your Android device or your computer to cast the screen and view Kodi on the big screen, it renders the devices unusable for anything else at that moment. Ideally, you would want Kodi media player to be cast from your phone in the background, just like it does on all of the Chromecast-enabled apps. Even though the feature isn’t available by default, you get the ability to do so using a couple of third-party apps and just a little bit of tweaking.
Before you begin, it is mandatory to have the following apps installed on your Android device:
Once you have downloaded the apps mentioned above, along with the XML file on your Android device, it is time to start the process.
- On your Android phone, open the File Commander app.
- Head over to the Settings menu by pressing the three-line menu button on the top-left corner of the screen.
- Enable the toggle switch right next to “Show hidden files and folders” and head back to the main screen of the app.
- Using the file manager, browse to the location where you have downloaded the PlayFactoryCore .XML file.
- Copy the .XML file and paste it to the following location: Android – Data – XBMC.KODI – Files - .Kodi – Userdata.
- Exit the File Commander app and launch the Kodi media player.
When you find the content that you wish to watch on the big screen and press the Play button, the LocalCast app will pop up, asking you to confirm the device that you want to stream to. Once the video streaming begins, feel free to exit the Kodi app, which should not affect the playback, even if you turn the screen off. Although this method will take you a couple of extra minutes, it is the closest thing you can have to official Chromecast support on Kodi.
Method 3: Stream using a PC
If you prefer keeping things official and don’t want to go through too much trouble to use Kodi on Chromecast, there are a couple of ways to do so. While the first method forces your phone to be left idle during the playback, the second one does the same, but with your computer instead. Since Kodi media player is available for Mac OS X, Windows, Linux, and Chrome OS as well, you can use the “Cast” feature that is built into the Google Chrome web browser.
- Open a new tab in the Chrome web browser on your computer.
- Using the three-dot menu icon in the top-right corner of the screen, find the Cast button.
- Click on the “Cast to” option from the tab and then select “Cast desktop” from the drop-down menu.
- The drop-down menu will ask you to select your Chromecast device.
- Press the “Share” button again to confirm your action and start casting on the big screen.
- Now minimize the Chrome browser tab and open the Kodi media player on your computer.
Make sure that you don’t end up closing the Chrome tab entirely since this will stop the casting feature right away. Similar to casting from an Android phone or tablet, you will need to keep your computer idle to enjoy Kodi on the big screen.
ExpressVPN to use Chromecast with Kodi
Due to the intense crackdown on Kodi and its numerous repositories and add-ons, the number of users worldwide has plummeted. Although there are new and improved add-ons appearing every now and then that keeps the full-blown entertainment experience alive, your ISP may be blocking your out from using the on Kodi media player the way it is intended to be. To ram past this blockade created over your internet connection, you need a VPN service provider such as ExpressVPN.
Unlocking Kodi add-ons: Due to restrictions from your internet service providers, or regional blocks put forward by the content providers, you might not be able to get your hands on the best Kodi add-ons available. To supercharge your entertainment experience, you need add-ons to work just right, which is possible only when you have the reliable ExpressVPN to spoof your location through its dozens of regional servers all across the world.
All-round security: Although you can change your IP address and spoof your location with any mediocre VPN service, you’d be missing out on the security features that ExpressVPN has created especially for Kodi. From web traffic encryption that makes it impossible for your ISP to get a hold of your private browsing data, to the Network Lock feature which ensures that your connection is secure even during a drop in connectivity, you’re always covered.
Online streaming entertainment in its current capacity, with dozens of international and several other regional services popping up every day, is just the tip of the iceberg. It is estimated by data scientists that a majority of all traffic over the internet will be accountable for media streaming within the next 5 years. The expected increase in numbers directly reflects a skyrocketing scale among Kodi media player users and sales of Google’s most affordable streaming device.
Even if Google never plans to offer official support for casting to Kodi on Android, it is still going to be a popular media player platform. With the help of the guide above, you can redefine online entertainment by combining the best media player and the most convenient media streamer available on the market today. What are your thoughts about running the Kodi media player on Chromecast? Be sure to share them with us in the comments section right down below.