It’s always frustrated me that there was no easy way to autostart Kodi as soon as you turned on your Android TV box.
Evidently, I was wrong.
In fact, the method I’m going to show you in this article is so easy, that I’m surprised that box manufacturers don’t enable it right out of the box.
You might be asking yourself why you’d need to automatically boot right into Kodi, or any other app, right?
After all, it’s just a few clicks to launch it. And if you create a shortcut on your Android TV home screen, it’s even faster.
That’s fine for you, but what about your parents, spouse, or your kids?
If you’ve ever set up an Android TV box for someone not as tech-savvy as you are, having it boot directly into Kodi could save you A LOT of tech-support phone calls.
In this article, I’m going to show you two different apps that will do the trick for you. Not only can you autostart Kodi, but you can use them for any app that you have installed.
Best of all, they work on both pure Android and Android TV too.
Do We Need an App?
Unfortunately, Kodi doesn’t have an option to do this without an app.
According to Koying, who was the lead Android developer at the time, Kodi doesn’t have the code-base to be able to implement this.
Worse yet, it appears that there are only a few select apps that are able to be added to the system’s autostart list. There’s no programmatic way to do it from the developer’s side without jumping through a lot of hoops.
There’s no system setting or startup folder that end-users can modify either.
That leaves apps as our best solution.
How to Autostart Kodi (or any other app)
Throughout this article, I’m going to reference launching Kodi automatically after you boot your Android TV box.
However, you can use this on other apps – not just Kodi!
I’m going to show you two apps. Both work with any app you’ve installed on your Android TV box.
Method #1: Launch On Boot
By far the easiest solution I found was to autostart Kodi is Launch On Boot. It’s available on the Google Play Store for both pure Android and Android TV.
Launch on Boot is a really small download, taking up only 3MB of storage space, and works on all Android versions 5.0 Lollipop and higher.
To get started, download download it from the Google Play Store, or your favorite alternative Android app store.
Once you install it, go ahead and open the app. After the splash screen, you’ll see a simple menu with only a few options.
At the top, there are three toggle switches. The first, marked Enabled, turns the app on or off. Enable this setting if you want it to work.
The second toggle switch automatically launches your live TV app.
Since we’re going to autostart Kodi, we’re going to leave this switched off. However, this is a really useful setting to have.
The final option is whether you want to autorun the app after your device wakes up, or just when you reboot. Personally, I leave this setting off so I only launch Kodi when I first turn on the system.
Next we’re going to look at the big red button in the middle that reads Select App.
Clicking on that button will take you to a different screen where you choose which app Launch On Boot controls.
There you’ll see a list of every app that you’ve installed on your Android device. Once you’ve found the right app, click on it to return to the main menu.
Launch On Boot includes a button to test your settings. However, I find the best way to test it is to physically restart your Android device.
If you’ve configured everything correctly, you should see the familiar Kodi splash screen right after your device boots up.
Method #2: AutoStart No-Root
I did a lot of research to try to figure out how to autostart Kodi on my own Android devices. AutoStart No-Root was one of the most popular tools recommended.
I prefer Launch On Boot, but I heard so many good things about AutoStart No-Root that I had to include it as well.
AutoStart No-Root is also available through the Google Play Store. But there’s no dedicated version for Android TV, which is a bummer.
However, I was able to find it on Aptoide TV and install it that way. You’ll see a warning that it hasn’t been tested on Android TV. Still, it seemed to work just fine for me.
If you do have an official Android TV device like the NVIDIA Shield that I’m testing this on, you’ll need to open AutoStart No Root though a sideload launcher.
You’ll only need to do that once, though, unless you change the options down the road.
There’s not a lot in the way of options here either.
At the top, you’ve got an On\Off switch to enable or disable the app. Right under that is the Applications section.
If you click on the Add button it takes you to a screen that lists all of the installed apps.
What I really like about this app is that you can select more than one app to autostart.
Once you select an app, head back to the main screen. There you’ll see a list of your enabled applications, in boot order.
There’s also some additional options for setting a delay for the first app, and for each subsequent app that you’re launching.
Personally, the only case that I can think of where I’d need to start multiple apps in sequence on an Android TV box, is if I had installed a separate Android TV launcher and wanted to launch another app as well. It’s great that there’s an app like AutoStart No-Root to give you that option.