As the future of Linux display managers is strongly set on Wayland as the replacement of Xorg (a.k.a X11), it’s therefore quite obvious that for Kodi to keep its relevancy on Linux, support for Wayland must be present.
In light of the above, using their participation in Google Summer of Code, Team Kodi has turned to a developer named Phillip (pkerling) to assist in getting Kodi back to a workable state on Wayland.
The reason it is said “getting Kodi back” and not “getting Kodi for the first time” supported on Wayland is because Kodi had already had Wayland support in the past (2013) however as time progressed and Wayland became more mature, that old Wayland support saw some unresolved bugs that entailed its drop eventually.
Written almost entirely from scratch, the new Wayland support by Phillip is focused on getting the basics ready so that Linux users who have migrated to Wayland could enjoy Kodi as soon as possible.
“Kodi code assumes the traditional procedure […] Changing this in a satisfying way would require quite a lot of refactoring […] so I have put this off for now and instead tried to make minimal adjustments”
After facing a number of important design decisions during the months of June, July and the beginning of August, Phillip’s code granted Kodi the ability to work in both full screen and windowed mode under Wayland, improved AV Sync functionality, use a unique Kodi window decorations (close, minimize and maximize buttons), and throughout the process fixing many bugs in both Wayland and Kodi itself.
That said, Kodi Wayland users must also consider that Wyaland itself and its Kodi support are still quite new to the scene, hence bugs may still lurk under the various components.
Finishing the work for the time being, Phillip have already submitted the code to Kodi’s mainstream development tree, and all that’s left to do is wait and see whether it will be merged in the next upcoming release of Kodi, that is version 17.4, or will it be served together with Leia, which means users will have to be patient a little bit longer.