Waterloo
11 May 2017
Reporter: Barney Dixon

More than two thirds of North America’s Kodi boxes are infringing


Nearly 70 percent of Kodi IPTV boxes in North America provide users with access to unlicensed, infringing content, according to a new report from Sandvine.

Looking at a dataset of more than 250,000 anonymised households, the broadband network solutions company found that 68.6 percent of households with Kodi devices had unofficial add-ons configured to access unlicensed content.

Just over 8 percent of North American households have at least one device with an active Kodi installation, meaning that roughly 6 percent of households in North America have a Kodi device with access to infringing content.

Sandvine pointed that Kodi and its developer, XBMC Foundation, were not the beneficiaries of this widespread IPTV piracy, as they sell the set-top boxes without any preloaded content, allowing the user to configure the application.

Pirates then configure the boxes as “fully-loaded” with unofficial add-ons that provide access to infringing content. These “fully-loaded” boxes are then sold online and in retail stores.

Don Bownman, CTO at Sandvine, said: “Kodi is often referred to by name as the root of the unlicensed content streaming problem, but the true roots of the problem appear to be the illegitimate video service providers and file hosts who are making a profit by enabling access to unlicensed content.”

Last month, a YouGov study found that 10 percent of the UK’s population has access to platforms such as fully-loaded Kodi boxes, Amazon Fire TV chipped sticks, and illegal streaming apps on smartphones and tablets.

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