People use subtitles for all kinds of reasons. You might be hard of hearing, watching in a noisy environment, or trying to learn a new language. Unfortunately, Kodi addon developers don’t seem to prioritize subtitle support but that’s alright: there’s a free way to quickly find subtitles for just about any movie or TV show automatically.
If you’re struggling to get those subtitles on Kodi addons working, don’t panic. Our guide will walk you through the process step-by-step and explain exactly how to install, configure, and use subtitles on Kodi.
Warning: Kodi should only be used for content to which you have the legal right to access. Neither the Kodi Foundation nor Comparitech advocates the use of Kodi for piracy.
How to install subtitles on Kodi
If you want to get subtitles working for Kodi, you’ve got to install an addon that will display them for you. Here are the steps for doing so:
- First, visit Opensubtitles.org and create an account.
- On Kodi’s main menu, click Add-ons, then Download, then Subtitles
- Install OpenSubtitles.org, then click it again and hit Configure
- Enter your Opensubtitles login details, then click OK
- Return to Kodi’s main menu and click the gear icon
- Select Player. On the left side of the screen, move your cursor over Language, then move over to the right, scroll down, and select Default TV show service
- By default, there are no subtitle addons listed. Click Get more… to see more options
- Select the subtitle addon you want to install. OpenSubtitles.org is the one we recommend for most people, but you should try out multiple addons until you find the one that is best for you. Whichever one you choose will now be set to search for subtitles anytime you are watching a TV show
- Scroll down the Language submenu again and select Default movie service
- Select the same subtitle addon for movies or click Get more… to choose a different one
- Start playing your movie or TV show and click the subtitles icon in the lower-right corner
- Select Download subtitle… (if the Enable subtitle button can be checked, it means that this particular film already has subtitles available. However, it’s still a good idea to install a subtitle addon because this won’t always be the case)
- After searching for a few seconds, you’ll see a list of subtitle sets. Sets with five stars are the most highly rated. Select the subtitle set you want to use
How to get Kodi subtitles in a different language than the movie’s original.
To change the language that the subtitles are in, start at the main menu. From there, click on the gear icon and then go to Player → Language → Preferred subtitle language. Now, simply select the language you want the subtitles to be in.
How to fix tracking issues in subtitles
Even if you select a subtitle set with a high rating, it’s still possible to run across sets whose tracking is off. If this happens, click on the subtitle icon while the movie is playing, then select Subtitle offset
A control will appear on the screen that you can use to adjust the timing of the subtitles so they fit the audio.
How to setup Kodi subtitles to automatically download
If you use subtitles a lot and are tired of constantly having to set them up every time you watch a movie, you can add another app that will automatically open the subtitles download menu each time you start a movie. This way, the only further step you will have to take is to choose a particular subtitle set.
To do this, click Add-ons→ Download → Services → AutoSubs. Install the AutoSub add-on just like you would any other.
Always use a VPN with Kodi
Your online activities aren’t as private as you might think. In fact, your Internet Service Provider (ISP) can see exactly what you get up to, and can analyze your internet traffic to tell if you’re streaming or not. So why does this matter? Well, putting aside the privacy implications, this means your ISP is able to throttle your speeds if it decides it doesn’t like what you’re doing. Using a Virtual Private Network, or VPN, solves both of these problems.
For Kodi users, we recommend NordVPN. It’s extremely fast and comes with a fantastic set of security features, not to mention a twice-verified zero-logs policy. There are even apps for Kodi-friendly devices like Amazon Fire Stick! Best of all, NordVPN comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can try it risk-free.
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Subtitles on Kodi: FAQs
What can't I find any subtitles for a specific film?
You might have noticed that there are lots of Kodi subtitle addons available. The reason for this is simple: no one place can possibly offer access to every subtitle file for every movie or TV show. For instance, Addi7ed specializes in TV shows, and a service like ZiMuKuX is more likely to have subtitles for Chinese titles.
The good news is that Kodi allows users to install as many subtitle addons as they like. When the movie starts, just open the subtitle menu and go down the list until you find a service that has subs for your preferred title.
Is OpenSubtitles safe to use?
In 2021, OpenSubtitles suffered a data breach that saw seven million users’ email addresses and passwords leaked online. This was a result of poor security practises dating back to the site’s creation but these have now been upgraded. While users were warned to change their OpenSubtitles password (and any other sites that used the same password), the site now appears to be properly secured and should be safe to use, provided you choose a unique password.