SPMC version 16.7.1 released with movie scraper fixes

A new version of SPMC has just been released. The 16.7.1 update contains the latest version of the TMDb movie and TV show scraper which includes new API keys that restore its ability to properly pull in movie information from The Movie Database. The easiest way to install this new version or update an existing installation on an Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, or Fire TV Edition television is to use my Downloader app and enter bit.ly/spmc1671 into the URL field. My detailed guide for sideloading can be found here if needed.

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Element’s Fire TV Edition television allows sideloading 3rd-party apps like Kodi

With any new Fire TV device, the first question I’m always asked is whether or not you can sideload 3rd-party apps, like Kodi, onto it. Element’s new Fire TV Edition televisions were no exception when I asked what you guys wanted me to check out. I’m happy to say that sideloading on these TVs is fully supported in the exact same way as it is on Amazon’s Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. The option to enable “ADB Debugging” and “Apps from Unknown Sources” are present in the TV’s settings exactly where you expect them to be. I was able to install my Downloader app and install both Kodi and SPMC without any issues. Sideloaded apps also appear on the home just fine, both in the recent row and in the app row.

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SPMC version 16.7 released with patch for subtitle security vulnerability

SPMC, the popular Kodi fork, has just released version 16.7.0 of the media player app. This update contains a patch for the subtitle security vulnerability that Kodi fixed last week. It’s recommended that all SPMC users update to this latest version. The easiest way to do so is to use my Downloader app from the Amazon appstore and enter bit.ly/spmc167 into the URL field on the home screen of the app.

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Fire TV update 5.2.4.1 causing poor 24p video playback in MrMC, Kodi, and SPMC

If your Amazon Fire TV or Fire TV Stick has received the 5.2.4.1 software update, you may be experiencing poor video playback within MrMC, Kodi, and SPMC. The developer of MrMC has emailed me letting me know that the updated version of Fire OS does not handle switching the video output to a 24Hz refresh rate correctly. This is a feature videophiles use to achieve perfect 1-to-1 synchronization between the frames in a video and the rate at which the display updates, but with software version 5.2.4.1, it results in jerky stuttering video. Read more ›

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SPMC version 16.5.1 update fixes 4K issues on the Fire TV 2

A couple of weeks ago, SPMC, the most popular Kodi fork, added support for 4K playback on the Fire TV 2 with a new 16.5.0 release. However, it was quickly evident that something was wrong because 4K playback was not working for most people. A new 16.5.1 version has just been released that should fix 4K playback on the Fire TV. To install the new version, you can follow my sideloading guide, or just use my Downloader app and enter http://bit.ly/spmc1651arm in the text field.

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SPMC 16.5.0 update adds 4K and refresh rate sync support for the Amazon Fire TV

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The most popular Kodi fork, SPMC, has just been updated to version 16.5.0 with a couple great new Fire TV features. First, Fire TV 2 owners will be happy to learn the app now supports native 4K video playback on their device. The update also adds refresh rate sync, which changes the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick video settings to match the frame rate of the file being played. Both of these features were first introduced on the Fire TV by MrMC, another popular Kodi fork. MrMC being open source was likely a big contributing factor to SPMC adding these features.

To install and try SPMC for yourself, you can follow my sideloading guide, or just use my Downloader app and enter http://bit.ly/spmc1650 in the text field.

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SPMC begins testing support for 4K and Refresh Rate Switching on the Amazon Fire TV

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SPMC, one of the most popular Kodi forks, has added support for 4K playback and refresh rate switching on the Amazon Fire TV to a new test version. MrMC was the first to bring these much sought after features to the Fire TV, and now SPMC is following suit. There are still some bugs to workout, but if you’d like to try it out on your own device, you can find the latest test version here. You can install this test version alongside the stable SPMC version, without overriding or effecting an existing SPMC installation, because the two versions have different package names, and will therefore be treated as two different apps by the Fire TV.

When all the bugs are worked out, the final version with 4K and refresh rate switching support on the Fire TV will be version 16.5.0, so keep an eye out for that if you would rather wait for the stable public version. If you have the means, please consider donating to koying, the sole developer of SPMC, to thank him for his continued support of Fire TV devices.

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Kodi’s future on Android and the Amazon Fire TV is in jeopardy

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A shortage of Android developers among the Kodi team is putting the future of Kodi on Android and the Fire TV in jeopardy. In a blog post, Nathan Betzen, president of the XBMC Foundation and a project manager on Kodi, put a call out for Android developers, stating “we can’t stress this enough, if we don’t get an Android dev soon, Kodi for Android could very well die out. This is a significant future problem.” Other than code being contributed back into Kodi by the developers of SPMC and MrMC, there is currently no one working on the Android version of Kodi. If new Android developers join the team, their first task would be “to simply port the work done on SPMC and MrMC into Kodi.” Both forked apps are thankfully open source projects. In the developer of SPMC’s own words, “Kodi on Android is on life support.” Read more ›

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SPMC requests app withdrawal to protest Kodi’s removal from Amazon Appstore

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The developer of SPMC, the most popular unofficial spinoff of Kodi, has requested for Amazon to remove his app from the Amazon Appstore in protest of Amazon’s decision to remove Kodi from their appstore last week. Koying, the developer of SPMC, says there is no way for a developer to remove their app themselves, so he has submitted a support ticket for its removal and is currently waiting for Amazon’s response. In his message to Amazon, he writes “In light of your ridiculous removal of Kodi from you store and by solidarity, I hereby request that you remove my SPMC (com.semperpax.spmc) app from your store.” Koying’s decision is bold and garners respect, especially considering his app would have been in a position to gain in popularity following the removal of Kodi. #freeKodi

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How to launch Kodi, XBMC, SPMC and other sideloaded apps from the Fire TV homescreen

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Sideloaded apps like Kodi, XBMC, and SPMC are inconvenient to launch since they don’t show up on the Amazon Fire TV or Fire TV Stick’s “Home” and “Apps” section. Instead you have to dig deep into the settings menu, requiring over 20 remote button presses, to launch a sideloaded app. I’ve been putting off writing this guide in hopes of finding a universal way to make all sideloaded apps equal citizens to official apps from the Amazon Appstore. That hasn’t happened, so this is a comprehensive guide of all the different ways to launch sideloaded apps faster. Each method is presented with its pros and cons for you to decide the best option for your needs. The guides concentrate specifically on Kodi, XBMC, and SPMC, but will work for any sideloaded app, unless otherwise noted. None of the methods require rooting. Read more ›

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