If you are looking for Windows Media Center functionality in Windows 11 or Windows 10, then this post may interest you. While Windows Media Center may have always been the first choice of Windows users or their home entertainment setups, there are several other free and good alternatives for users.
Windows Media Center alternatives for Windows 11/10
Let us look at some of the best Media Center alternatives, like Kodi (Xbox Media Center), MythTV, MediaPortal, Plex Media Player, and Freevo Media Center.
1] Kodi (Xbox Media Center)
Kodi, previously known as Xbox Media Center, is by far considered as the best alternative to Windows Media Center. It was originally designed for Xbox and was later made available for various platforms like Mac, Android, Linux, iOS, and more.
Kodi is an open-source, free media player that allows users to watch videos, play music, podcasts, and all other digital media files from local storage or from a media card. Kodi is available for most of the common platforms for use with televisions and remote controls. It comes with various plugins that let users to access the online content on websites like Pandora Radio, YouTube, Spotify, and Grooveshark, etc.
While there are many unofficial tuners available for Kodi, the company has also started testing the official U.S TV tuner support on Xbox One to let users watch live TV programs on their gaming console, pause, and rewind them.
This Open Source media software was developed in 2002 and comprises almost every standard feature a Media Player requires. It can convert your PC into a complete digital multimedia home entertainment set-up with a digital recorder. Other functionalities of MythTV include the ability to pause, rewind and skip TV shows, schedule recordings, adjust audio pitch, and infrared remote control.
It can be considered as one of the best alternatives to Windows Media Center and also supports most of the popular operating systems, primarily Linux, Mac OS X, and FreeBSD. Download MythTV here.
This open-source media center software is worth adding in the list of alternatives to Windows Media Center. The functionality of MediaPortal includes recording, playing, and pausing live TV channels, playing videos and music stored in media cards and local storage, and showing pictures. The plugins added to MediaPortal let users watch videos or listen to music online. LCDs, TV tuners, and infrared receivers make it a complete home entertainment setup.
Specifically designed for Microsoft Windows, this media player can be controlled by any input device, supported by the Windows Operating System, like a PC Remote, Gamepad, Kinect, Keyboard, or Wii Remote. Basically, it transforms your PC into a complete entertainment media solution.
4] Plex Media Player
While Plex doesn’t allow users to record live TV shows, it is still one of the most popular media players around. Besides Windows, Plex supports Mac, Linux, FreeBSD, and mobile devices too. It organizes your media data stored in the local devices and streams them to the Digital Media Players and Smart TVs.
Users can view photos, and watch videos, or podcasts on a computer running Plex Media Server. Furthermore, the plugins let users watch the online content on Netflix, Hulu, and CNN videos. Get Plex here.
5] Freevo Media Center
This is yet another open-source media center that can be used as a substitute to Windows Media Center. The functionalities of Freevo include digital video recording, personal video recording, playing videos, gaming, listening to music, and more. Freevo can record TV streams and can also stream online videos from websites like YouTube, Hulu, and Flickr, etc. Users can pause or rewind live TV shows and also schedule recordings with Freevo Media Center.
This media player can be controlled by simple input devices like infrared remote control, keyboard/mouse, or some network app.
TIP: Have a look at VLC Media Player and Moovida too.
These are some alternatives for Windows Media Center. Almost every software comes with a similar set of features and functionalities. Pick the one which suits your preferences the best.
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