How to watch Netflix and other streaming services on Kodi?


Kodi is a great tool for Raspberry Pi, it allows you to use it as a media center (Videos, Music, Pictures and Games).
However, it’s not always easy to find the add-on you want to watch your favorite streaming service.
Today, I’ll show you how to install Netflix and other add-ons on Kodi.

How to watch Netflix on Kodi?
There are many add-ons available for Kodi, to watch Netflix and other streaming services.
Once installed, a login is required, and all the Netflix content will be available on the Raspberry Pi.

In this post, I’ll introduce Kodi and OSMC, then explain how to install them on your Raspberry Pi.
And finally, how to add the main streaming providers add-ons (Netflix, YouTube, Amazon, …).
If you already have Kodi installed, feel free to use the table of contents below to move directly to the section you’re interested in.

I highly recommend using a VPN as soon as Kodi is installed. It protects your data and identity, but also allows you to access movies not available in your current country. You can read my tutorial here on how to install NordVPN with Kodi.

Kodi introduction


If you are lost in all these new words and abbreviations, request my free Raspberry Pi glossary here (PDF format)!

Let’s start with a background introduction to what Kodi is and how to use it on Raspberry Pi.

What is Kodi?

Kodi is a media center software allowing us to turn an old TV in a smart TV, to play local files and watch streaming services.
In this interface, you get access to your Movies, Pictures, Music and Games
The default skin on OSMC looks like this:

kodi menu

Many other skins are available if you don’t like this one 🙂

So basically, Kodi turns your TV into a smart TV thanks to the Raspberry Pi.
And even if you already have a smart TV, it goes further with all the add-ons available.

We’ll see how to install the main add-ons later in this post.

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What is OSMC?

OSMC is an operating system meant to run Kodi.
It’s the easiest way to install Kodi on a Raspberry Pi.

You can use other distributions (like LibreElec), or even install Kodi on Raspbian, but if you want to use your Raspberry Pi only for smart TV, get this specific distribution.

Now, I’ll show you how to install OSMC to have Kodi on your TV.

Raspberry Pi 4 / 400

OSMC is not available on Raspberry Pi 4 and 400 for the moment.
If you have one of these models, you have two options:

  • Install Kodi on Raspberry Pi OS Desktop: it’s available in the default repository, so nothing complicated here, and you can use the commands I’ll give you later.
  • Install LibreElec: it’s an alternative distribution to OSMC, so once installed it should be similar to what I explain with OSMC.

To install LibreElec, you’ll find all the information in this video:

Kodi installation

Prepare the SD card

To get Kodi on your Raspberry Pi, I recommend you to install OSMC on it.

  • Download the OSMC images from the official website.
    Select Raspberry Pi, then click on the “Disk images” button.
    Click on the latest version for your Raspberry Pi model:
  • Insert the new SD card in your computer.
    If you don’t have any SD card reader on your computer, use an adapter like this one on Amazon.
  • Use Etcher to flash the image on your SD card.
    If you don’t know Etcher, it’s a tool available here to easily flash SD cards.
    etcher menu
  • Select the downloaded OSMC image by clicking on the left button.
    Then choose your SD card.
    And finally click on “Flash!” to start the SD card creation.
  • Wait a few minutes.

Once done, insert the SD card in the Raspberry Pi slot and move to the next part.

First boot

Start the Raspberry Pi and wait a few minutes for the installation to complete.
You have nothing to do for the moment, the installation process is automatic.

On the first boot, you’ll get a welcome menu, choose your default parameters in this one:

  • Select your default language
  • Then choose your time zone in the list
  • Now, it asks you for a host name, you can keep the default
  • Keep SSH enabled as we’ll use it later
  • Read and accept the license agreement
  • Select your favorite theme (only two available on a fresh installation)
  • Finally, say if you want to register for the newsletter or not
  • Exit the welcome menu

You’ll now see the OSMC main menu.
We just need to update everything before going further.

Kodi upgrade

Now we need to update the system and probably the Kodi version.

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System update

The system update procedure is almost the same as on Raspbian:

  • Connect to your Raspberry Pi with SSH:
  • Update the repository cache:
    sudo apt update
  • Upgrade the main packages:
    sudo apt full-upgrade
  • Reboot your system:
    sudo reboot

It should be quick if you just installed the latest version available, especially if it’s a recent one, but just in case.

Upgrade to the latest Kodi version

OSMC is often a bit late with the Kodi versions.
I wrote a first version of this article in 2018, and Kodi 18 was not yet installed on it. As I’m updating it now, it’s the same problem with Kodi 19.
So, whatever the year you are in, you’ll probably need to update manually if you want the latest version (it’s not mandatory by the way).

Check your current version

You don’t need to change anything if you’re already on the latest version.
To check this, go to Settings > System info.
In the bottom-left corner you should have something like “OSMC running Kodi XX.X”.

If it’s not the latest version available on the Kodi website, you can try to update it.

Upgrade Kodi

To upgrade Kodi, we need to add the new version repository for apt and then do another update (change the version depending on the latest one available):

  • Edit the apt source file:
    sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list
  • Add this line:
    deb http://download.osmc.tv/dev/gmc-19 gmc-19 main
  • Install the repository key to allow you to download packages:
    wget -qO - http://download.osmc.tv/dev/gmc-19/public/pubkey.asc | sudo apt-key add -
  • Then update your system again with:
    sudo apt update
    sudo apt full-upgrade
    sudo reboot

You can now check again in Settings > System info.
But you should see something like Kodi 19.X.

We have done the Kodi installation, we can now add your favorites plugins to watch Netflix and other streaming services.

Netflix add-on

The first service provider I want to show you how to install is Netflix.
Netflix is a paid service, so you need to have an active account to use it on Kodi, as on any computer.

Preparation

The Netflix add-on needs some system requirements before the installation
We’ll use the Netflix install script from zjoasan to do this quickly:

  • Connect to your Raspberry Pi with SSH
  • Download the script:
    wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/zjoasan/netflix-install-script/master/netflix_prep_install.sh
  • Add the execution right with chmod:
    chmod +x netflix_prep_install.sh
  • Run the script:
    ./netflix_prep_install.sh
  • This will install Python requirements, you have nothing to do, just wait a little
    kodi installing python
  • At the end, you’ll get this message:netflix installation ready
  • Click “OK” and the system will restart

Netflix installation

After the reboot, we need to install Netflix on Kodi:

  • Back to the Kodi interface, go to the main menu
  • Click on Settings > Add-ons browser
  • Select “Install from a zip file”
    You’ll get a security warning the first time, change the settings to allow unknown sources.
  • Choose “Home folder”
  • Then go to the “addons” folder
  • Choose the only file inside (Netflix-repo zip)
  • This will add the CastagnaIT repository
  • Now you can go into “Install from repository” and choose this repository
  • Click on “Video addons” and install Netflix and all the dependencies.
  • After the installation, click ESC two times to go back to the main menu
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Netflix usage

Netflix is now installed on your system, to use it follow these steps:

  • In the Kodi main menu, go to Video > Video add-ons
  • Select the Netflix item
  • Enter your Netflix account email and password to log in
  • Choose your profile in the list
  • You are now ready to watch your favorites movies on Netflix with Kodi
    netflix watch on kodi
  • On your first movie play, it may ask you to install additional modules like Widevine.
    Accept them, but be careful to the additional storage required.
    To download Widevine, you need over 2Go of free space on your SD card for example.

That’s it, Netflix is now available on your Raspberry Pi 🙂

YouTube add-on
youtube on osmc

The YouTube add-on is easier to install because the package is available in the default repository.

YouTube installation

To install YouTube on OSMC, follow these steps:

  • Go to the Kodi main menu
  • Select Settings > Add-on browser
  • Then “Install from repository”
  • Open the “Video add-ons” menu
  • Find YouTube in the list and select it
    (Use the up arrow key to go to the bottom of the list faster)
  • Choose “Install” and accept all the dependencies

That’s it, you installed YouTube and you can use it as explained in the next paragraph.
If you want to change the default language and country, you can run the setup wizard, if not, it’s not mandatory.

YouTube usage

YouTube is available in the same menu that Netflix:

  • In the Kodi main menu, choose Videos
  • Then Videos Add-ons
  • And finally YouTube
  • Sign in to access your feed

Note: YouTube now require API keys to use it on Kodi. I will write a dedicated tutorial very soon, but for now, you can follow this one.

  • Once done, you can now watch your YouTube videos:
run youtube on raspberry pi

Amazon Prime Video add-on

Amazon Prime Video is the premium streaming service from Amazon
If you have an account, you can also use it on OSMC.
If not, click on this link to get a free 30-day trial and test it on OSMC
Attention, this plugin only works for US residents (or premium members from Amazon.com at least).

Amazon Video installation

The installation is not the easiest one as Amazon has no package available in the Kodi repository.
To install it, you need to download and install a new repository:

  • Connect via SSH to your Raspberry Pi
  • Move to the home folder (if not already there)
    cd /home/osmc
  • Download the XLordKX zip file to add the repository from the same name
    wget https://github.com/XLordKX/kodi/raw/master/zip/repository.xlordkx/repository.xlordkx-1.0.0.zip
    If you don’t trust me, the main GitHub website is available here.
    It’s the only way to install Amazon Prime Video I have found for Kodi 18.
  • Go back to the Kodi interface
  • On the main screen, choose Settings > Add-ons browser
  • Select “Install from zip file”
  • Click on “Home folder”
  • Then select the zip file we just downloaded and install it
  • Back in the Add-ons browser, choose “Install from repository”
  • Click on “XLordKX Repo”
  • Go to “Video add-ons” in this repository
  • Finally, choose Amazon Prime Instant Video in the list
    (it’s the only one available)
  • Click on “Install” and accept all the dependencies

Amazon Video usage

You should already know how to use it if you read the entire article 🙂

  • In the Kodi main menu, select Videos
  • Then Videos add-ons
  • And now Amazon Prime in the list:
    amazon on osmc
  • Start and configure the application settings

That’s it, Amazon Video is also available on your new media center.

Twitch, Plex, Popcornflix & others

They’re many streaming providers that are directly available on Kodi
You can follow the same procedure as YouTube to install them:

To install them, browse the Kodi Repository plugins list:

  • Settings
  • Add-ons browser
  • Install from repository
  • Kodi repository
  • Video Add-ons
  • And select the plugin you want to install in this giant list
  • Once installed, you can see it in the Videos > Videos add-ons menu from the Kodi main screen
install twitch on osmc
Twitch game in progress
install plex on osmc
Plex login screen on OSMC

Using a VPN on Kodi

Before finishing this tutorial, I just want to recommend you looking for a VPN when you are using Kodi.
As a reminder, a VPN is an encrypting technology, allowing you to keep yourself anonymous and protect your data online.

The other benefit is that you can often use it to watch movies or series that are not available in your country, same thing for services.
It’s not mandatory, but it’s a great add-on to improve your experience with Kodi.

If you want to give it a try, I have an in-depth tutorial on how to install NordVPN on Raspberry Pi OS or Kodi, that will explain step-by-step how to register and configure everything easily.

Recently, I switched to a cheaper solution, with Ivacy VPN.
It’s working very well, you can check your latest offer by clicking here.
I’ll share a tutorial very soon on how to install it on your Raspberry Pi.

Whatever the solution, there is a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you don’t take any risk by trying one of them now:

Related questions


If you are lost in all these new words and abbreviations, request my free Raspberry Pi glossary here (PDF format)!

How to delete add-ons on Kodi? If you installed an illegal add-on or simply one that doesn’t work as expected, you can remove it in the Settings > Add-ons browser > My add-ons menu. Select the plugin category and click on it. You’ll get a menu to manage it (Configure, Update, Uninstall, …)

Do I need a VPN to use Kodi? Not really. If you use only free stuff or paid accounts, you don’t need it. People often add a VPN on Kodi to hide their identity (doing illegal actions on Raspberry Pi) or change their region to get access to blocked content in their country (forbidden too). So keep a safe usage, do only what you can do on your computer and don’t try to bypass the rules

Is it possible to install Kodi on Raspbian? Yes, if you want to continue using Raspbian on your Raspberry and try Kodi, you can install it directly. It’s available in the apt repository (sudo apt install kodi). You also need to know that OSMC is based on Raspbian, so you may migrate your current services on OSMC (there are small changes, but not too much)

Conclusion

That’s it, you know how to watch the major streaming providers on your Raspberry Pi, with OSMC and Kodi.
OSMC and Kodi are great tools once you know how to use and customize them.

Be careful with your Kodi usage, even if some additional repository and plugins allow you to watch movies for free, it’s not legal.
If you can watch a box office hit for free on your Raspberry Pi, there is a big change you are not watching it legally.

If you like OSMC, tell me in the comments, so I can write more tutorials on how to use a Raspberry Pi as a media center.
There is a ton of tips to know to do this correctly.
In any case, you can always read my Kodi guide for beginners to learn more about this.


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Patrick Fromaget

I'm the lead author and owner of RaspberryTips.com. My goal is to help you with your Raspberry Pi problems using detailed guides and tutorials. In real life, I'm a Linux system administrator with a web developer experience.

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