Besides just being known for providing user-friendly experience, Windows operating system is also popular among the users because of the interactive apps that come in the pack. However, after Windows 7 version, Microsoft is no more providing users with media apps such as Windows Media Center.

In Windows 8, you will need to upgrade to pro version to get access to Windows Media Center which will cost you handful amount of dollars. Whereas, there is no option of Windows Media Center in Windows 10. So, if you are using Windows 8 or 10, you may have to face such issues.

Windows Media Center

However, there are some reliable alternatives to Windows Media Center that you can use to avoid such issues and enjoy watching your favorite videos. Given is the list of handpicked Windows Media Center alternatives from which you can choose the one that best fits your needs.

  1. Kodi:

Formerly known as XBMC, Kodi is one of the highly renowned alternatives to Windows Media Center. The only reason why XBMC is now changed to Kodi is because XBMC (Xbox Media Center) was specifically developed for Xbox. In order to make it generic, the company has changed its name to Kodi. Developed by XBMC Foundation, a non-profit technology consortium, Kodi is an open-source and free media player app that provides you with astounding home theater features.

Kodi TV

With this amazing media player, offering user interface of 10-foot, users can play and watch their favorite videos, podcasts, music and other media-rich files on computers and televisions. Besides reading and playing files from network and local media, it is capable of playing files directly from internet. While other media player comes with basic features such as live TV and recording, it also allows user to add YouTube, Hulu, Netflix and other media centers through add-ons.

  1. MediaPortal

MediaPortal is one of the most amazing media centers that can fulfill your media needs in a similar way Windows Media Center used to do. According to tech-geeks, it is a derivative of XBMC but the developers have completely re-written it to give it a unique look to make it different from the rest of other media players.


It comes with all the possible features that you may have been looking for in a media center including recording, pausing and playing live TV. Moreover, it is capable of laying DVDs and playing online videos and other digital media files. Also, you can listen to your favorite radio channels and music on it. One thing that makes it appealing for users is that it can be controlled via remote and can be accessed through web and mobile device as well.

  1. Plex

Plex is yet another popular media player comprised of two main components i.e. the Plex Media Center and PC-based Server. Plex allows you to transform your one computer into a media server which you can access using its media center. Moreover, it allows users to stream media to their smart gadgets and mobile using the Android and iOS app.


Although it is a feature-rich media center, but it does not support live TV watching and recording. With Plex, you can share your media libraries with your friends and save videos for watching them later. Also, you can access to online channels and stream them on any of your device on which you have installed Plex.

  1. Emby

Emby is also an astounding, feature-rich media center that allows user to watch live TV and stream online movies. Emby is quite similar to Plex in many features such as it is also comprised of two main components media database and media server –a home computer transformed into server by installing the Emby setup in it.


Once the server is prepared, the client can access media on any of its preferred device including mobile, tablet, laptop or smart TV. It is a cross-platform media center which is free for all supported operating systems including Windows, Mac, Linux and FreeBSD. However you need to install TV apps, for accessing media on TV, and mobile apps for accessing on Windows 8, Android, iOS and Windows Phone.

  1. JRiver MediaCenter:

Last but not the least on our list of reliable alternatives to Windows Media Center is JRiver MediaCenter. It is really a phenomenal media center which does not only offer support for video, audio and photos but also for DLNA devices’ network. Empowering users to play their favorite music from any device was enough to attract them, but with the DLNA support, it hasn’t left any option for smart users, especially music lovers, to go for another media center.

JRiver MediaCenter

Not only the developers have listed out features for sake of listing, but all of the features come in the pack. So, you will not need to pay any extra charges to buy some add-ons to enable or integrate the listed features separately.