As one of the most popular media management software in the market, Kodi pretty much outdoes its competitors in so many practical ways. It’s been known to compare even better than other services that demand payment despite being free. The service can be used to either manage your local movies and music videos or to even stream other shows and channels if you work towards getting a Kodi addon. Longtime users will tell you that using the service without add-ons is undermining its capabilities since the add-ons open a door to a whole new world of entertainment that not many other streaming services are able to access.
This newfound access, unfortunately, comes with its own string of issues. The wide range of Kodi add-ons allow access to both legitimate streaming services, as well as third-party content that most people consider being pirated. Accessing such pirated content can land you in trouble especially if your ISP finds out what you’re doing, so one of the best measures you can employ to stay in the clear is to sign up with a credible VPN service.
Abbreviated for Virtual Private Network, a VPN service is able to hide out all your online activities by encrypting your connection. With such an encryption, you’ll establish complete privacy online, and you’ll even have your personal details hidden from anyone who might think of launching a cyber attack or hacking your device. A good provider also allows you to unblock geo-restricted content such as BBC iPlayer from outside the UK and keeps you safe from the vulnerabilities that normal Kodi users would be exposed to when using third-party addons.
Kodi is Legal
Before we look into the VPN services that you ought to use, we’d like to debunk one issue that most people thinking about getting Kodi always have lingering in their minds; the legality of the service. Previously known as XBMC, Kodi itself is a fully legal service that was established and is run by a nonprofit organization. The software is offered for free download from their official website.
The buying and selling of devices that already have Kodi pre-installed is also not illegal, but this stands as long as such devices don’t contain 3rd party add-ons that tend to stream from a bunch of illegal sources. The legal implications that most users run into are centered around Kodi’s third-party addons. These addons normally include pirated torrents websites and IPTV streams that tend to be in breach of copyright agreements, and if found streaming from such addons, one could be charged in a court of law. To avoid all this, what you need to do is stay away from devices that already have third-party addons preinstalled, and you should be able to do this through avoiding the boxes that get sold on eBay or even by Youtubers.
One more thing you ought to be clear about is the legality of streaming from third-party sources as dictated by your country. In some places, it might be accepted by law, denied in others. For users that are not too sure about their country’s policy, we recommend signing up with a VPN. This will help keep your online activities safe and protected from anyone with malicious intentions.
Best VPNs for Kodi in 2018
When choosing the perfect VPN for Kodi, one of the main things you need to consider is the level of compatibility with a wide range of Kodi devices and addons. You don’t want to sign up to a provider that doesn’t work well with your chosen streaming service. You also want to subscribe to a provider that guarantees the best in terms of security. Their encryption and zero logging policies need to be up to par. Speed is also another issue that cannot be ignored since nobody likes having to wait around as a video takes too long to get buffered. Lastly, ease of use is also key, as people wouldn’t want to have to do too much thinking when getting the service set up and configured.
Compatibility wise, no other service in the industry is as well set up for working with Kodi as IPVanish. The service is great for Android-based devices such as Fire TV Stick & Amazon Fire TV, and allows for users to directly download the APK file from the website for direct install onto your device. IPVanish also has an impressive list of over 1000 servers, and with it having full ownership of its network, customers won’t have to worry about any kind of delays when seeking help from their customer care service. Security is also well-optimized thanks to its 256-bit AES encryption, and despite being based in the US (home of NSA), the service still offers a watertight zero logs policy. IPVanish also offers apps that are compatible with MacOS, iOS, Fire TV, Android and Windows, so users with various devices shouldn’t have to worry.
As an all-round provider, ExpressVPN comes in at a strong second due to its guarantee of consistent protection and super fast speeds. The service also integrates well with Kodi, but one particular thing users will have to do once subscribed is to have their account authorized so that they’re able to download the APK version of its app. This allows users to download directly into their devices. ExpressVPN can also be relied on to work around a wide range of geo-restrictions placed on popular channels and streaming services such as BBC iPlayer, Netflix, HBO GO, Hulu and HBO Now. The service also has a reward scheme where customers who refer other customers both get one months free service once the new subscriber signs up. ExpressVPN has an app that’s compatible with all the popular platforms, and also allows customers to use 3 devices simultaneously under the same account.
If there’s one thing that places NordVPN far ahead of other VPN providers, it has to be its wide network of over 4000 servers. The provider relies on 256-bit encryption to offer protection to its large group of users, and also offers a wide range of services that they get to enjoy. These features include CyberSec which blocks out ads and malware, DoubleVPN which allows you to encrypt your connection through two servers, browser extensions which offer lightweight protection, and support for up to 6 simultaneous connections. Security is assured through their 256-bit encryption protocol, as well as an app that’s compatible with Windows, iOS, Linux, MacOS and Android-based devices. NordVPN also supports activities such as torrenting, P2P file sharing and HD streaming.
Users who depend on Kodi for access to streaming services such as BBC iPlayer will be impressed to know that CyberGhost groups its servers according to the streaming service they grant access to. This is one thing that makes CyberGhost VPN service quite attractive to users that spend most of their time streaming. To download the app, users will have to get onto Google Play. Security is solid, and the apps are available for all Android, Windows, MacOS and iOS-based services.
Using a VPN with Kodi
The easiest and most direct way to use VPN with Kodi is to install the VPN provider’s app. To do this, you’ll have to download the app from your provider’s website, then use your account username and password to log in & connect to a server in your chosen location. This way, after you start up Kodi, all traffic will now become encrypted.
The other option that also applies is setting up VPN on your router. Doing this requires that you have an idea about the router’s firmware, so we’d advise that you do a bit of research on Google to make sure everything’s on point. In some instances, you would have to replace the router’s firmware through a process called “flashing”. If you’d want to avoid doing this by yourself, then we suggest purchasing routers such as the Tomato, DD-WRT or AsusWRT that already support VPNs.
You can also sign up for and install VPN on your PC or Mac laptop, then create a WiFi hotspot that other devices are capable of connecting to. This is known as a virtual router, and by connecting your Kodi device to it, you can ensure that all your streams are encrypted by the VPN service.
The Best Kodi Boxes To Use
If you’d not like to have Kodi software run within your computer’s operating system, then you can also opt for a separate device that’ll house it, known as a Kodi box. They’re available for both Android and Linux users, with the most popular one are:
- Gem Box
- Amazon Fire TV
- Fire Stick
- Razer Forge TV
- Matricom G-Box
- Nvidia Shield
- Wetek Play
- Play 2
- Raspberry Pi 3 (for Linux – OpenELEC).
Conclusion on The Best VPN for Kodi
A piece of advice that can be offered to users whose devices run on Android but still can’t allow app downloads from Google Play is to stay away from APK files. Most users who get met with this challenge often decide to download the APK files that will then make it easy for your device to accept app downloads from unknown sources. This should be avoided because it is very easy for you to infect your device with a virus through these downloads. To avoid this, users can either download the APKs from the VPN provider’s sit, or “sideload” them from another Android device that don’t have Google Play.