If you’re a Sony Android TV owner or are looking to get one in the very near future, then the apparent blocking of Kodi on newer Sony models might not be a welcome feature (via Android Police).
The service — formerly known as XBMC — often comes under scrutiny by many brands, stations and outside parties. But Kodi is an exceptional local streaming and playback solution for those with a large digital media library all thanks to the tools that can be tacked on to the system.
Update 01/10: Sony has responded to the issue and it turns out the blocking of Kodi was all accidental. They released the following statement:
Thank you for bringing this to our attention. After looking into the issue further, we’ve discovered a software issue on our end that is incorrectly classifying Kodi as a kernel object (“ko”). We are working on a fix for this issue to include in our next software update.
An update will likely be forthcoming in the next few days or weeks to fix this unintended accident so if you’re one of the unlucky few currently affected, sit tight.
Kodi began life as XBMC as a homebrew streaming solution for the original Xbox console. Since starting life as a passion project, it has now grown into one of the best HTPC applications for any platform. The sheer number of users and customization options is why many home media managers swear by the system.
In an official Kodi Twitter post, the people behind the project point the finger directly at Sony. That comes after reports of users on the official Kodi forums claim they are now no longer able to even install the application on their Sony smart TVs from the Google Play Store.
Well done @SonyElectronics for actively preventing users from installing Kodi on their newer Android TVs. How grown up of you. Even their firmware in the TVs is broken. Guess we will suggest users to just buy something else that does work.
— Kodi (@KodiTV) January 4, 2019
Digging by Kodi forum members points to Sony themselves blocking the package ID from being installed. Kodi forum user ‘chrisyu’ even went so far as to recompile the app and change the package id to ‘com.amazon.aiv.eu’, which saw the application install and run just fine.
It’s not all bad news though, as, with the number of complaints in the replies to Sony under the original Kodi Twitter post/rant, Samsung US decided to step in to target some unhappy customers. The only problem? Samsung TVs don’t run Android and rely on an external device for Kodi to run, doh!
Really?? The only reason I bought a Sony. Guess my next tv is back to Samsung!
— Brian Sheppard (@Sheppard19Brian) January 4, 2019
We don’t anticipate that Sony will continue blocking the app indefinitely but should they continue to do so, it might be worth trying to return your TV or maybe think about investing in a standalone Android TV option — the two best options being the Xiaomi Mi Box S and Nvidia Shield TV — both of which fully support Kodi.
Read more on Sony:
- Sony reveals Android 9 Pie upgrade dates for Xperia XZ Premium, XZ1, XA2, more
- Android Pie is now rolling out to the Sony Xperia XZ2 and Xperia XZ2 Compact
- Google Assistant adds commands for Sony Xperia XZ3 features including 4K HDR recording