Now when it is officially announced that there won’t be any Windows Media Center functionality in Windows 10, you might be looking for some good alternatives. Launched back in 2002, Windows Media Center was best known for its media playback and support for TV tuners.
Later, Microsoft stopped offering free Media Center for Windows 8 and made it a paid add-on, and now the company is moving on and decided to abandon the software in Windows 10. Hence, anyone who upgrades their system to Window 10 won’t be able to use this PC software. No matter how good or bad it was, Windows users now have to look for some good alternative to play or record TV with an over the-air-tuner.
While Windows Media Center has always been the first choice of Windows users or their home entertainment setups, there are several other free and good alternatives for users to choose from.
Windows Media Center alternatives for Windows 10
Let us have a look at some of the best Media Center alternatives, like Kodi (Xbox Media Center), MythTV, MediaPortal, Plex Media Player and Freevo Media Center.
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 which allows users to watch videos, play music, podcasts and all other digital media files from local storage or from media card. Kodi is available for most of the common platforms for use with televisions and remote controls. It comes with various plugins which 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, 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 them 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 ability to pause, rewind and skip like TV shows, schedule recordings, adjust audio pitch, and an infrared remote control.
It can be considered as one of the best alternative to Windows Media Center and also supports most of the popular operating systems like 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 card and local storage and showing pictures. The plugins added to MediaPortal lets users watch the videos or listen music online. Its LCD displays, TV tuners, and infrared receivers makes 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 in to a complete entertainment media solution.
Plex Media Player
While Plex doesn’t allow users to record the 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 stream them to the Digital Media Players and Smart TVs.
Users can view photos, 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 video. Get Plex here.
Freevo Media Center
This is yet another open source media center which 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 music and more. Freevo can record TV streams and can also stream the online videos from the 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 infra-red remote control, keyboard/mouse or some network app. Download Freevo here.
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.
This post will show you how to play MP4 on Windows 10.