The cord-cutting revolution continues to gather pace. Whether you have gone cold turkey and canceled cable entirely or taken a more reserved approach and shaved the cord instead, there’s a good chance that you’re hungry for more live TV.
Of course, video-on-demand services such as Netflix and Hulu can fill some of the void, but there’s nothing like being able to flick between different channels and mindlessly watch some footage.
If you’re looking to re-introduce live TV into your life, you have a few options. For example, you could try installing some private Roku channels, you could check out some of the apps in Plex’s Channel Store, or you can watch live TV on Kodi.
The Issue of Legality
If you have been following the news lately, you will know that Kodi has a reputation for piracy.
Thanks to several large repos and a near-countless number of add-ons, Kodi can (theoretically) stream almost any TV channel in the world and play virtually any movie or TV show you can think of on demand. But streaming copyrighted content without permission is illegal.
In this article, we’re not interested in the illegal content. Aside from the fact that you’re breaking the law, the pirated content is extremely unreliable. Streams come and go, while on-demand video is frequently unavailable. It all detracts from the Kodi experience.
Instead, we’re sticking to the legal live TV options, and we urge you to do the same. Not only is it more reliable, you also won’t get in trouble for watching it.
1. BBC iPlayer
The BBC iPlayer app is available in the official Kodi repo. Therefore, you can install it on your app without needing to battle with third-party repos or downloaded ZIP files.
The app is not an official BBC product. It makes use of the company’s API. It lets you watch BBC One, Two, Three, Four, News, and Cbeebies live and on-demand. You can also catch up with the BBC’s back catalog of content, and listen to the British broadcaster’s many radio channels.
If you don’t live in the UK, you will need a DNS proxy to make the app work. BBC blocks all VPN traffic on the iPlayer site.
Download: BBC iPlayer
2. FOX Sports GO
Live sports are one of the many reasons so many people have kept their cable subscription. Thankfully, the situation is starting to change. Some sports sell their content directly to the end users, with the shift underpinning the increasing popularity of cord-shaving.
The FOX Sports GO add-on, which is also available in the official repo, lets you watch all the channel’s content on your Kodi app. You can view live TV as well as on-demand videos.
The drawback? To use the app, you will need to have a login and username from one of FOX Sports GO’s participating TV providers.
Download: FOX Sports GO
3. Pluto TV
Pluto TV is one of a new breed of live TV apps. It’s not owned or operating by any major network.
The free app offers more than 100 live TV channels that you can watch at the press of a button. Some of the most popular channels include CBS News, The Weather Network, NBC, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, and Sky News.
If you live in the United States, you can access a wide-variety of video-on-demand in addition to the live TV. The on-demand library covers everything from Hollywood blockbusters to budget TV shows.
Download: Pluto TV
Arte is a joint venture between French and German TV producers. The channel’s content focuses on culture and the arts. The channel is free-to-air in western Europe, hence its availability on the Kodi official repo.
Despite being a Franco-German venture, the channel does offer plenty of English-language content. You can access it all through the app, which provides both live TV streaming and on-demand old content.
Cheddar is an online-only, post-cable live TV channel that has managed to amass a loyal following in recent years.
This channel is focused on news. Specifically, it looks at news concerning technology, the media, and entertainment.
This legal add-on for the channel can only stream the live broadcast. It does not offer any on-demand services.
6. Comet TV
Comet TV is another online-only channel. But whereas Cheddar focuses on live news, Comet TV is a sci-fi network.
The channel offers a variety of programming, including old favorites, cult classics, and even undiscovered gems.
Like the Cheddar add-on, the Comet TV add-on does not offer any on-demand videos. It’s just a live TV stream.
Download: Comet TV
7. MLS Live
MLS Live is another one for sports lovers. It broadcasts all the live action from the United States’ domestic soccer league, Major League Soccer.
To use the service, you will need to have an MLS Live subscription. It costs $79 for a full season, but discounts are often available through the website.
However, if you were hoping to use the app to catch up with your local MLS team, you might be out of luck. The channel only shows out-of-market matches, and nationwide blackouts sometimes occur.
Download: MLS Live
8. PlayStation Vue
Along with DirecTV and Sling TV, PlayStation Vue is at the forefront of the cord shaving phenomenon.
Of course, if you’re a PlayStation Vue subscriber, you don’t need to use this Kodi add-on. The service offers a standalone app for most platforms.
However, the Kodi add-on allows you to bring your live TV under the Kodi umbrella, thus putting all of your media in one place.
The channels you receive will depend on which subscription package you have.
Download: PlayStation Vue
How to Install Add-Ons From the Official Kodi Repo
To install any of the Kodi live TV add-ons discussed in this article, just follow the simple step-by-step instructions below.
- Open the Kodi app.
- Click on Add-ons.
- Click on the box icon in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
- Choose Install from repository.
- Scroll down and click on Kodi Add-on Repository.
- Choose Video add-ons.
- Find the add-on you want to install.
- Click on the add-on’s name.
- Select Install.
Which Legal Kodi Live TV Add-Ons Do You Use?
In this article we have introduced you to eight Kodi add-ons that broadcast live TV. Some, such as BBC iPlayer, show a selection of content. Others, like such as Cheddar and Comet TV, only broadcast one channel.
We’ve only scratched the surface of what’s out there. The official Kodi repo alone has many more lesser-known channels and foreign-language options for watching live TV on your Kodi. We want to know which Kodi apps you use to watch live TV!
Remember, we’re only interested in the legal options. You can leave all your suggestions and recommendations in the comments below.
While you’re at it, please make sure to remove unsafe Kodi repos.