The owners and developers behind the popular XBMC software have announced a name change that will see the software rebranded as ‘Kodi‘. The name change has been a long time coming in fairness, with the outgoing title suggesting to users that the powerful software is capable of being installed and invoked on Microsoft’s Xbox gaming consoles. That may have been true once upon a time, but XBMC hasn’t been capable of running on an Xbox since the original hardware release, with no compatibility being offered with Microsoft’s 360 or One offerings. The rebrand will see the software welcome in its third name change in the last 12 years and should also provide some much-needed clarity on the Xbox compatibility issues.
Attempting to step away from its original connection with Microsoft’s Xbox gaming console is only one of the reasons for the rebranding process. According to Nathan Betzen, who operates as the Kodi Community Community Project Manager, the Xbox Media Center name hasn’t quite given the software the props it deserves over the last few years:
Furthermore, while the software still acts as a media center, it also hosts addons, loads games, streams content to and from numerous devices, and can ultimately act as a complete replacement for whatever platform it is hosted on. Indeed, XBMC today is far more an Entertainment Center than a simple Media Center. In essence both the ‘XB’ and ‘MC’ simply don’t make a whole lot of sense any more.
Part of the problem, and one of the largest reasons for the immediate name change, was the constant threat of legal action as well as the lack of power that has afflicted the foundation due to having no capability to legally pursue companies and products that attempted to capitalize off the XBMC name. Those behind the change are promising that the rebrand to Kodi Entertainment Center shouldn’t have any direct impact on those who are currently using the software. The numerous developers behind the software are currently in the process of changing all of the application’s branding in preparation for the upcoming Kodi 14 release. The official Kodi logo is also in the final stages of design thanks to doghousemedia.
The upcoming Kodi developers conference promises to unveil a lot more information about the rebranding of the application, but for now, Betzen signs off the foundation’s blog post by promising that the software will become “even stronger than it was before“.