SiriusXM is Doomed

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When Howard Stern finally retires, so will SiriusXM. It will go the way of the CD – and the tape deck – before it.sirius-logo

Because if you take Howard out of the programming equation, what are you left with?

Howard’s is the only channel that’s not either superfluous or so lousy with commercials you pine for terrestrial radio – which at least had the upside of being free.

SiriusXM has become – as far as content – terrestrial radio you have to pay to listen to.

Including the ads.

Which are relentless – and endless.

Try listening to any of the talk channels (Howard excepted) and you’ll hear more about get-rich quick real estate flim-flam “opportunities,” snore-suppressors, bankruptcy/credit card debt relief and other such than you will whatever the show you were trying to listen to was supposed to be about.howard

Call 1-800…now!

If you are like me and despise ads – especially today’s ads, which are voiced-over either by a hyper-enthusiastic overly chirpy bimbo (the auditory equivalent of a Fox News anchorette) or a just as too-enthusiastic metrosexual male whose pushy/exuberant hawkings are equally as annoying – you will in short order feel a strong urge to put your fist through the LCD display.

Or at least, change the channel to another – hopefully without a squawking pitch going on.

Which is no easy feat.

It is not possible to listen to pretty much any talk channel except Howard for more than about 10 minutes without enduring the commercial juggernaut.

Say what you will about him, Howard – uniquely – doesn’t “break” for “messages” every handful of minutes (for several minutes at a time). He will continue without interruption for 30 minutes, 45 minutes – an hour or more.

He is the only talk host who does not constantly interrupt the talk with jabber.pushy-ads

I think he has a special rider in his contract – which it’s rumored he insisted on as part of the deal.

The rest should have followed his example.

Instead, they follow the terrestrial radio example.

Which begs the question… why bother?

If SiriusXM were free – like terrestrial radio – then the ubiquity of the commercials would be acceptable. It’s how they pay for the stuff you’re getting to listen to for free. But the thing with SiriusXM is you have to pay to listen to it. You are paying to listen to commercials.

Lots of commercials.

This will not endure. The business model makes no sense.betamax

Excepting Howard – who is worth listening to, worth paying to listen to (his interviews in particular are exceptional) everything else is either not worth paying to listen to, or is available elsewhere.

On terrestrial radio, for one.

For free.

This goes for the talk channels, primarily. The right wing and left wing blowhards are available on FM/AM as well as via podcasts (the latter Howard has made fun of as a venue for no-talents without an audience, but I suspect he is a victim of his age – just as I am – and doesn’t see the semi bearing down on the industry).

The music channels make even less sense. There is after all, Pandora. And other forms of music streaming, which pipe music into your car (or wherever) via Bluetooth over your phone or iPod.

No subscription necessary.streaming

And Pandora tailors the music to suit your tastes – not the tastes of a programmer at SiriusXM.

Your iPod (or phone play list) meanwhile, does not cut out for minutes’ long blocks of dead air – as SiriusXM maddeningly does, if you live in a mountainous or heavily treed area (like I do).

This usually happens right in the middle of something you were actually interested in listening to and when the signal returns, it’s just in time for Buy Gold Now!

There is a cool fix for this – which the latest SiriusXM receivers in new cars have: It’s a record/playback feature. Basically, the head unit has a hard drive and downloads the programming as you drive, storing the most recent 20-30 minutes or so – kind of like an airplane’s black box recorder. If you hit a dead spot, you can hit rewind/playback and not miss what you were listening to.cd-table

Still, the commercials, the duplicative (and redundant) channel offerings combined with the fact that they expect you to pay for it all… .

And that’s literally what they demand.

Like cable TeeVee, which demands you buy a “package” of crap you don’t want (example, 15 channels of ESPN and other jock-sniffing dreck that guys like me care about as much as George Takei cares about vagina) in order to get the one or two things you do want… . I have no interest in subsidizing all the right and left wing jabberfests or Dr. Laura or music channels I don’t listen to because Pandora. I’d like to subscribe to Howard, maybe Raw Dog comedy… and that’s it.

A la carte. 

They – SiriusXM – won’t allow it.

It’s not hard to divine the future.

And satellite radio – like CDs and tape decks – is already the past.

Once Howard’s gone – along with his millions of fans – expect SiriusXM to go, too.

And so the wheel turns.   

Baba-booey to y’all.

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47 COMMENTS

  1. Love it as well, but too expensive- around $21/month here after fees/taxes.

    In comparison, my triple-play (cable TV, unlimited nationwide phone, 200MBps internet) is only $100/month.

  2. You might be confusing a couple of things here, EP. I don’t think Satellite Radio is necessarily dead, but the business model is dying, as is terrestrial radio. It’s being slowly displaced by Internet sources for audio entertainment. I say this as someone who has been using Satellite Radio since the late 1990s when it first came out. Back then you had to get it installed aftermarket because no car manufacturer built it into their cars. Now it’s ubiquitous.

    1. Talk Radio – Talk Radio itself is dying, being replaced by podcasts, which are admittedly basically a type of talk radio. However, instead of listening to Howard Stern’s idiocy and crudeness, I can choose to listen to Tom Woods or the like. I also get to listen to them on my time, rather than having to wait for the show to start/stop on the radio. In the same way it’s hard to watch TV like I did in the 90s before things like TiVo (and now BitTorrent), it’s excruciating to listen to talk radio. They never talk about anything I care about. Their opinions are always mainstream drivel or totally uneducated/misinformed (e.g., Stern). And you always end up missing the beginning, middle, or end of the one in a million chance that there’s something mildly interesting being discussed. Then add in commercials that are worse than anything on Satellite Radio, and it’s a total lose-lose.

    Satellite’s advantage is that you have a broad choice of drivel to listen to, but otherwise it still faces the same problems as terrestrial radio.

    2. Music radio – It used to be that you could listen to a variety of terrestrial radio stations and get different music on most of them. Now they’re all owned by ClearChannel and they have the same top 20 playlists for Classic Rock, Country, and Alternative. 12 different radio stations, 3 different playlists. None of them incorporating anything new or interesting. With services like Pandora, Spotify, etc. you can at least get some unique stuff put in rotation, often mixed with new and up-and-coming artists that haven’t broken into mainstream or may never do so. However, you run the risk of too narrowly focusing the music selection and missing out on lots of other stuff in other genres you didn’t think to make a “station” of.

    Satellite radio has an advantage here that they get live recordings, interviews with artists, constantly new artists (usually that the record labels want them to push, but that’s nothing new). And there’s a much larger variety of stations available to switch between, certainly vs. terrestrial radio.

    3. News – On terrestrial radio you never have access to more than a 60-second blurb of news in between commercials and more commercials and an occasional song. On the Internet, it’s possible to stream audio news reports from cable news stations (yawn) or possibly from non-mainstream sources (if you can find a decent one). On Satellite, you can get the MSM streams but also some other stuff. It’s better than terrestrial but not Internet streaming.

    4. Sports – I can listen to sports on Satellite that I would never be able to listen to on terrestrial radio. I can listen to SEC games anywhere in the country while traveling, and it’s live. IF terrestrial radio carries the game at all, it will be only in areas local to that team and you’re constantly switching stations trying to keep reception clear. IF you can find the game on the internet streaming, you usually have to pay a crazy expensive fee to listen, unless you’re a lucky fan of a team that doesn’t charge for streaming their live game audio.

    5. Internet streaming – The biggest problem with internet streaming is poor cell reception. If you’re anywhere but the biggest cities, you’ll constantly be dropping signal, buffering, and stuttering. It’s infuriating. If you’re anywhere even slightly rural, you may not get any reception at all. I live in the middle of these US and there are areas totally lacking in cell reception out here that are larger than entire states on the East Coast. You can drive for hours sometimes on major highways and have little to no signal. And that’s with Verizon and AT&T. Good luck streaming that. Satellite goes with me anywhere and everywhere except underground or in the deepest valleys. It often even reaches in through car parks and such. No cell service. No terrestrial radio. But still get satellite.

    Plus, you have to have massive data caps on your cell plan to do much more than a little bit of streaming of Pandora or the like. That’s expensive. More than a Satellite subscription.

    Plus, if you’re streaming a popular site, or the internet is congested, you won’t be able to get anything. I say this from experience. Evacuating from a hurricane means everybody is on the road and every passenger is on their cell phone data plan looking up stuff. Getting internet bandwidth is about as tough as getting a gallon of gas. Satellite is a one-to-many broadcast system, much like terrestrial radio, and so you can have a virtually unlimited number of listeners.

    Satellite radio already had to merge because of podcasting and streaming on iphones. Though a lot of the 20-somethings might still use it for some things, talk radio isn’t among them. Mostly it’s just too expensive for what you get.

    The up side is that satellite is still a viable content distribution network, especially considering how many cars have it equipped now, if they can figure out what sort of content would make it worth the cost. I can get better talk radio on podcasts than either satellite or terrestrial. I can get as good music through streaming if I wish to burn through my data cap. Nothing covers sports as well as Satellite does currently. News is a bit dependent on what live news source you prefer (I don’t know of a good live news source yet or I’d recommend it, certainly not any of the MSM channels).

    I real entrepreneur could probably put satellite radio to good use, but the current management seems stuck in a business model that’s at least 20 years out of date. It’s sort of like the newspaper industry’s struggles.

  3. Hey, here’s an idea…

    Record your own music to listen to and you don’t have to screw with idiots like Stern. Those iPods work pretty good and there are auto converters for playing them thru your vehicle’s radio or whatever the Hell they call it now system.

    I recently retired from the radio business after doing it for 50 years and can’t stand listening to the commercial or satellite programming any longer. It’s iPod for me with music I like, or, I find a classical music station.

    • For $5/mnth Pandora is ad-free. You create stations and thumbs up what you like(I rarely thumb down anything). I created a station a couple weeks back with a song, How Can You Mend a Broken Heart. It has taken me in two directions and I have discovered a lot of artists I hadn’t known about I really like.

      Last night I discovered Kevin Spacey is a really good singer and sings with some great people. Willie Nelson has out a new album not even remotely country or close to things he’s known for. I was surprised to find Tony Bennet singing with Lady Gaga(who knew she was so good?), k d lang, Norah Jones, Eliane Elias, and many more.

      Then that same song took me another direction with soul, blues and R&B singers so now I have two stations with the same title. Whatever I’m in the mood for I can hear on Pandora. I can load music into my phone and play it on just about anything but it’s all music I know well and nothing new. I find my music collection along with Pandora and S/XM are all good choices for me. Live in a truck 15 hours a day and Stairway to Heaven is more than I can take having only heard it 2 million times. I’m so sick of FM and AM radio and my own music collection I’m ready for the looney bin.

      I’d like to get my old Zen going again but my phone does everything it does and more. Don’t recall what the Zen held but it wasn’t close to 64 GB like my phone.

      • Hi Eight,

        I had to chime in re Lady Gaga. I thought she was just another confected/auto-toned pop star with zero talent who relied on meat suits and such to become uber famous. Turns out she has a fantastic set of pipes. The tragedy is that you never hear her sing on Mass Radio. You hear her awful pop scheisse instead.

  4. Listen to Jason Ellis, Tony hawk, Dave the Voice Boyle on Faction (41). No ads, good interviews, and really interesting topical talk. They’re also available on demand on the Sirius app.

    • Hi Rob,

      Agreed – but I expect them to go to a Podcast format in the near future. Satellite is obsolete or becoming so. Howard doesn’t agree with me, I realize.

      But I agree with Joe Rogan.

      • Eric,

        “Satellite is obsolete or becoming so”

        Well, maybe not obsolete, but with the Musketeers blowing them up on the pad, perhaps not the most economical way to reach the listeners.

  5. I disagree with a lot of this. Where else would we have our own Springsteen and Elvis channels, complete with interviews, guest DJ’s and the George Klein show?

    • Hi KJ,

      Pandora has “Elvis radio” – or any other conceivable radio. You make your own station. Create it yourself and their AI algorithm then picks similar material which you “thumbs up” or “thumbs down.” Ever try it?

  6. I love Sirius XM and don’t listen to a lick of Howard. I like the genre mixes, road trip radio, Mararitaville, etc. I like curated content. If I use Pandora and don’t up or down thumb sounds I have a very limited mix. But then it’s not smart for me to up thumb or down thumb when I’m driving.

    No to mention it’s a pain in my but to take out my phone, start an app and start a playlist or whatever every time I get in the car.

    With Sirius XM I turn on the car and presto, 80’s on 8 or Mararitaville, And since I have the lynx plus radio, I also get road trip radio, poptopolis, and yacht rock radio without needing to fire up the app.

    And I can drive all day and not use a bit of data’s or discharge my phone. My phone status on my pocket, paired via Bluetooth, and I only use it to make our receive calls through the car audio system. Perfect…

    • Hi William,

      I agree it has its pros. But I also believe it is a dying dinosaur. Not sure how old you are, but ask a young 20-something their opinion of satellite… .

    • T Mobile includes unlimited audio streaming in their data plans, and just about every major audio site is included. Granted, it could disappear whenever they get another wild hair, but for now it’s pretty useful. Only downside is their coverage isn’t quite as good as AT&T and Verizon, but it has gotten much better in the past few years.

      As far as discharging your phone, it is fairly easy to get a lighter adapter charger at any gas station, grocery store, Amazon, Best buy, Target, Walmart, flea market, or gun shop.

      • Eric, if T Mobile was even close to Verizon in coverage I’d be there in a heartbeat. But places I might be all day often don’t even have any mobile coverage, the very reason I like S/XM. Last year I was called out on a Sunday for a hotshot load. I had been listening to Willie’s Roadhouse and they’d been hitting some fairly eclectic music which I enjoy since it’s rare to hear and good music to boot. Right after I got loaded(the truck, the truck)they started in on an interview with John Prine(and some of his friends). He talked and sang a lot of his songs with just his flat top guitar and they played recordings of him and a plethora of good musicians and it was great. It went on for 5 or 6 hours and finished just as I got back to the yard. Best Sunday I’ve spent in a long time. I couldn’t do that in Schliecher Midland, Reagan, Glasscock or a plethora more of them out that way(far west Tx.)with Pandora but I’d sure like to have it too. The best of both worlds for me is S/XM and Pandora. And now Verizon has fucked up and didn’t renew my data plan that I paid for last week so I’ve got to drive 60 miles and jack with those underpaid fools to get things straightened out. And Verizon screws you on their data plan if they don’t have your name and they consider the name of a state to not be my name.

        • You might take another look at TMO. After the AT&T merger (thankfully) failed, they got a chunk of spectrum and cash to build out their LTE network. Much of Colorado is covered by LTE these days, many that were no service even a year ago. Last time I drove back east the only area where I roamed over to a regional carrier was in Iowa. Everywhere else I was on TMO, but there were some stretches of flatland where I only had 1X. All of the areas I visited in Pennsylvania had LTE, including out in the sticks.

          And their customer service is much better than Verizon. The only times I’ve had to call in the issue was resolved in a few minutes. Never have had a billing issue in any way.

    • I like a lot of things on S/xm such as Classic Vinyl, Willie’s Roadshow(great interviews with great musicians, hours long with them doing their own stuff live and spinning records of good folks they’ve recorded with. Sure, there’s boring BS on there too and stuff I can’t stand but not nearly like any other radio.

      Well, I gotta have a phone and GPS too so I’m tied to a smart phone. Last I looked in far west Tx. TMO didn’t even get into it but I’ll take another look. Verizon is typical bully boy business model I detest but need their coverage. I’ll tell you right now, digital was the worst thing to happen to mobile phones. I had an antenna on my truck and could get a signal nearly anywhere. Now you need a $300 booster with antenna and BT to your phone to get the same reception. As communication grows and businesses adopt it I find myself getting docked nearly a grand a year just to keep a job. Multiply that by tens of millions who are in the same boat I am and you get your hair up over the kind of money they’re extracting from even the lowest paid workers.

      When the patch was booming the muchachos, few of which spoke English had one or two phones for a crew of 20 and probably companies paid for those. Meanwhile all us truckers and operators are expected to spring for big bucks so we can get text and cell service along with GPS.

      And for people who think they must have a separate plan for XM, you can get an add-on radio that will BT to your installed unit and move it from vehicle to vehicle to house.

  7. I wouldn’t mind the commercials as much as the price. Its just unreasonable I have 4 cars and I am not paying subscription for each vehicle . When I come home and want to stream from my computer I am not going to pay an additional fee for that. Like the OP I use Pandora and Tune-In and just Bluetooth to my car . have a decent data plan on your phone and it is much better then paying for XM and being restricted. If XM charged $10 for 2-3 Vehicles + 1 online streaming I’d pay it for the convenience but that isn’t likely to ever happen.

  8. I got xm for a while with my new car. I would say it is worth it if you either have horrible or no cell reception. Otherwise don’t bother.

    Is it true XM is now requiring you to opt out of their free trials with vehicle purchases?

  9. I remember hearing about the merger and thinking “guarantee they get worse and close shop in 5 years”. Well, statement one came true, and while statement two hasn’t yet, they’ve been running on fumes for years. Good riddance. The problem all music outlets face, and never seem to grasp, is that hardcore music enthusiasts are very anarchic and free-market, whether they’re liberal or not. There is no morality or brand loyalty when it come to getting quality tunes. That’s why popular players change every year or so. As soon as one of them gains popularity, they try to go down the path of web/radio/TV and cram it full of advertising and junk, thinking the users are hooked and will put up with it. It never works.

  10. Eric,

    I just read that Mr. Cannonball and Nader nemesis Brock Yates has moved on to the great car mag in the sky.

    What influence, in any, did he have on your writing?

    And since Stern is the topic, anyone remember him as a country DJ for WWWW?

    He lasted a week after the format change.

  11. There are a few mis-statements in here. Pandora is NOT free, and DOES require a subscription. On top of that, it depends on your internet connection to stream to you. If you are on the road, there is only one way to get internet access, and that’s through your cell phone’s data plan. That means that to stream *anything* in your car, you are using up your data plan. And it does not take long at all to eat up your months data plan. Think an hour or two. After that, you’ll have used up your data plan, and it will either cut you off, or they will start charging you overage charges. That adds up FAST.

    No, the only free ways to listen to music in the car is either terrestrial radio, as mentioned, or stuff a bunch of music or whatever into some form of MP3 player (which nearly all phones do come with at least). But of course the second option has a limit on how much you can store. And you have to have bought the music in the first place.

    • Hi R,

      Actually, Pandora is free. You can buy a subscription to avoid commercials. But you do not have to subscribe to access Pandora. I use it all the time. For free.

      On data: Most people have unlimited now, yes?

      • eric, ain’t no such thing as free air time. I can’t look at radar right now because I burned up all my bandwidth listening to Pandora. I generally have to buy more data time but my new time starts tomorrow so……..

      • Let me say that another way. Pandora is free to listen to with ads which aren’t bad but it seems to depend on time of day. I listen to it 2-3 hrs a night generally and don’t do much more with my air time except access weather radar and such. I have a 2 GB plan cause I won’t give Verizon my name opposed to giving them your name and getting another GB. If you listen to Pandora on a high speed internet, it is free but if you have to buy air time to listen on your phone, it’s not free. I could have purchased another 500MB for $5.46 and the 3 days I have no data would have been covered. If I’m stuck out on a lease somewhere I’ll listen to it all day but not at night. So 30 days times 2-2.5 hrs a day will get you by on a 2 GB plan. That’s what I’ve experienced in the last couple years anyway.

        I need 25′ of height to get high speed internet at the house and this summer was too hot to spend in the barn fabbing up a tower. I’ll get er done this winter.

    • “No, the only free ways to listen to music in the car is either terrestrial radio, as mentioned, or stuff a bunch of music or whatever into some form of MP3 player…”

      I find that my 8-track tape deck works just fine. Paired up with a radio I’m all set for on-the-road entertainment.

        • I created an Allman Bros. station on Pandora a couple weeks back and listened to it for days. I wasn’t driving so I did the thumbs deal and great southern rock just kept on coming. I wore that station down to a nub.

          I’ve created stations I know there will be a plethora of musicians associated with a single artist and use it like a red-headed step child for a week. I even had one station get to playing a lot of Commander Cody which isn’t always something that comes up. I bought Command Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen soon after release of their first album. An older guy stopped by one day and went crazy or crazier. He’d hung out with them in Ca. for a while. Everybody thought I’d lost my mind but soon it was one of the most played albums in the house. But they thought that when my buddy bought the debut album of NRBQ that’s probably not available now but it’s hard to beat Sweet Liza Jane.

  12. I had XM and liked hell out of it. I still like S/XM but there’s not as many niche stations as before. I am sort of addicted to Pandora and for reasons i can’t say, the later it gets in the day the less ads they have and of course, you can go ad free for $5/month. I’d like it better if I had high speed internet and wifi since I use more than the basic bandwidth I get for my phone. I like that you can look up any artist or music you want.
    Watching The Book of Eli recently and DW is listening to some Zen type device and How Do You Mend a Broken Heart was playing….the Al Green version although I can’t think of anyone who did it that didn’t do it justice including Michael Buble. I looked for it that night on Pandora and the first station drifted off into R&B/Jazz/Blues with one great song and artist after another. The next night I skipped a few I had heard the night before and the station went in another direction, more of Jazz and Blues. I spent about 4 nights on those two stations before I started going in a direction and artists I liked less. I’ve found a great many new artists I really like on Pandora and that’s on of the main attractions for me.

  13. For me, personally, SiriusXM has been a really good value, especially since I cut cable two years ago.

    My primary source of entertainment is Major League Baseball, and now I have the option to listen to pretty much every game available, which is great for me. I also really enjoy the baseball talk station. Paying $25 per month for 2 radios (home and car) is a much better deal to me than having to cough up well above $100 per month just so I can get a handful of channels I actually want. Where I live there are only there radio stations that I can reliably pull in, and only a handful more that sometimes plays music (all “morning zoo” type talk in the morning, and DJs that talk about stupid crap more than play music the rest of the day).

    That all said, while the value is absolutely there for me, I do see this as a thing that will eventually run it’s course. The music channels already have cheaper competition to them that are more user controlled. People like me who really enjoy live sporting events, and listening is a good alternative to watching, are a niche customer base, and that usually is a formula for eventually fading away.

  14. I had XM for a couple of years before the merger. The sound was excellent, whether on my little portable receiver or the factory unit in our car. As I recall, the audio quality was even one of their selling points back then. But these days when I hear Sirius/XM in a vehicle, it always sounds like it’s coming through a cardboard tube or something. That may not matter much with talk or sports, but if music is your thing, it’s a deal breaker. Several family members who have bought new cars say they decided within days not to subscribe to Sirius/XM because it sounded so bad. Streaming audio on my phone via Bluetooth may not be CD quality, but it’s far superior to sat radio. And of course, it’s free. And customizable. No contest.

    • I started out with a Sirius receiver, made by Audiovox. A company not known for their quality devices. At the time XM receivers were more expensive, so I went the cheap route. At some point Pioneer(?) introduced an extremely small portable receiver for XM, smaller than an iPod. Sirius was working on a portable player. My contract was up, but I figured I’d wait to see what they produced. Sure enough it was a pig. So I switched over to XM, and oh boy what a difference! Not only that, but XM had terrestrial translators in big cities, so I could just walk around Denver and have fantastic reception. I used it for a few years until I upgraded to a smart phone.

  15. I actually subscribe to XM, except that I negotiate a $5.00 a month rate. Pocket change. If they don’t give me the deal, I tell them to disconnect. Then, they put me on hold, come back and say yes. I listen to the rock stations. Talk radio doesn’t interest me at all. I don’t know if they have an Infowars channel. If they did, maybe I’d tune in. That should be XMs next thing. That is, if you can stand to listen to Alex Jones 24/7. Maybe that’s an idea. You heard it here first.

    • Hi Swamp,

      I’d pay $10 a month for Howard and maybe a couple of others. I hate all the sports stations and left/right talk stations I’m obliged to subsidize.

      I think the market is going to go Podcast and other individualized/ a la carte programming. Their model is basically the Cable TV model – and it’s not going to work going forward.

      • I usually get them down to eight something a month the last couple years. But I don’t try too hard. I rarely listen to Stern. I find his show more often annoying than entertaining or interesting. But I do like channels that play music I haven’t heard or would not have much luck finding to purchase because they were recorded 60,70,80 years ago or more.

        The other issue is they charge for a separate account for a home receiver or internet listening. If they wanted listeners they would include one or the other for home use for everyone with a subscription in their car. But they are afraid that someone somewhere might listen for free on some other person’s account.

        They lost Art Bell because he couldn’t get enough people to listen who could call in. Good talk shows are often long format too. Least the ones I prefer. I like listening to deeper subject matter that doesn’t fit in 20min slots. For the majority of people driving it’s got to be short when they can’t reach home and turn it on inside. Maybe I just don’t know the radio business but I think they could benefit themselves that way.

        • I find recordings from the 20’s occasionally and often from the 30’s and up on Pandora. $5/month for ad free Pandora at home is a good deal and I find new artists continually that I really like. But there’s no way to get Pandora without air time in a mobile environment as far as I know which sucks if you want to spend a lot of time on the road.

          So why would the S/XM adapter not work for home and mobile both? I can load 64GB on my phone and plug into auto stereos or home either one. That’s well more than my old Zen and it can be arranged any way you like it. Wish somebody would make a voice operated menu. One thing I like about Pandora is just having a song come to mind and searching for it via creating a new station.

    • Yeah, me too. I don’t have BT in the truck I drive most, so XM works for me. I can’t even hear the stereo in the Triumph, so not a big deal there.

      I find myself using Amazon music most of the time now. They have a huge library and I’m weird in that I prefer to listen to whole albums, not playlists. Maybe I’ll look at adding aftermarket BT to the Tahoe.

  16. Never thought much of Stern, until I started to listen. Now, he’s a refreshing change from the usual.

    I mean, where else can you learn about “Prostate Karaoke”? Made me want to go visit the doctor!

  17. There are a couple of niches that SXM can wiggle into, coastal nautical navigation and services is one that they’re already doing. Inertia will keep them going for quite a while, it’s the same argument to be made against cable TV. Also, I’d strongly recommend looking into alternatives to Pandora, they’re supporters of terrorist organizations like BLM. Oh, and interesting choice including an image of Laci Green in the article. Look her up on YouTube if you want to become sick with rage.

  18. Sirius XM died when Apple introduced the Podcast app on every iPhone. The merger was the death wound of satellite radio though. XM was far better at niche music programming than Sirius. The compression codec was much better for music, and the receivers were much better quality devices. When Sirius took over, all those great music channels were gone. As was my subscription.

    But right about the same time as the merger I got a magic phone made by Nokia. It could play music, books on tape (Audible books) and these radio shows called “podcasts.” It fit in my pocket. The only “subscription” fee was my Internet connection. Suddenly the “hundreds” of channels on satellite radio pale in comparison to the thousands of hours of programming available to me, on every subject under the Sun (and quite a few that shouldn’t see the light of day). Sure, many of them have the same s**** ads for the same s**** products, but the player has a 15 second skip ahead function that works remarkably well. Since getting a new car I’m once again getting constant spam from Sirius to “activate” my radio (thanks to the dealer giving them my email address). I’ve listened to the sat radio exactly twice, just to make sure it was still crap. The nav system comes with helpful traffic info that tells me there’s construction “ahead” or a traffic jam “ahead” while I’m in said construction or traffic jam. CDOT already has a text service that will do the same thing, and much sooner than the nav system, paid for out of taxes.

    So once again, the business model is wrong, the product is wrong, and the company is doomed. Someone might realize they could provide a podcast distribution service that could shove out thousands of podcasts a week for free (charging producers who would love to see cheaper bandwidth costs), but that isn’t something that would even come close to occurring to the guys running the satellite. Instead they pay auto manufacturers to put the receivers in the dash.

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