Kodi’s developers recently announced the next version (17 or “Krypton”) of the application.
Due to the authors’ code changes, Kodi 17 will not support devices running Android 4.x or earlier. The developers’ announcement notes for Kodi 17 include:
Over the years the Android platform started to mature and catch up to the other platforms regarding capabilities. This also means that we can drop all the custom code we had to add in the beginning to get Kodi running at all as that’s now becoming obsolete. One of those from back in the days was libStageFright which we dropped in a previous release and was replaced by the standard MediaCodec from Android. With v17 we have started to clean up all the old implementations which sadly also means we had to set the minimum Android version to at least 5.0 Lollipop. It’s uncertain at this time if we even have to go higher and set minimum to Android 6.0 Marshmallow as this contains certain features we need to improve Kodi. For now you are safe if you at least have Android 5.0 Don’t worry you can keep using Kodi v16 on all previous Android versions however you just can upgrade to a newer Kodi version.
This means that as it currently stands, Kodi 17 will only run on Android 5.0 Lollipop or above. If you have a newer DroiX® device there is a good chance that you are already running Android 5:
Android 5.0 or above
- DroiX® T8-S Plus
- DroiX® T8-S Plus Gamer’s Edition
- DroiX® T8 Mini
- DroiX® iMXQpro
Android Lollipop on other models such as the T8-S and T8 are under review, any further details will be posted here at our main blog – https://DroidBOX.co.uk/blog.
What are the differences between Kodi 16 and 17?
There is a new default skin called Estuary (and Estouchy, a touch screen version) which will replace the older Confluence skin. In terms of functionality or major new features, there is little to distinguish the two. Behind the scenes is where most of the changes have been made, with changes to the way videos are decoded and rendered on screen for example. Very little of this affects how you watch media or listen to music. One change which some users will find beneficial is that the PVR function is now much easier to use.
Currently Kodi 17 actually makes it harder to install 3rd party addons due to new security features, no wizards currently work on 17 and are unlikely to do so until a stable release. Read here and watch the video below for more details.
Do I need Kodi 17 right now?
The development of Kodi 17 is in the early stages which is called ‘alpha’. These versions of Kodi are in daily development and can have a number of incomplete features and very likely a number of bugs, some of which can prevent the software from working at all. These builds are not recommended for day to day use, and should only be used if you are happy to use possibly broken software or want to help report bugs.
There are daily updates for Kodi 17 while in the development cycle. Do you really want to have to regularly manually update Kodi, having to set up Kodi or resinstall any addons every time?
In summary, while it is nice to have the very latest version of Kodi, we do not recommend using it during the alpha development phase. To put it plainly, at the moment it is a lot of hassle just for a higher version number.
When Kodi 17 Stable is released, we will spend some time testing it and release a build for DroiX® devices that have Android 5.x installed. You are of course welcome to download the builds from the Kodi website and install it yourselves, but please be aware that we will not provide support for it.