Is XM Bending Over Backwards To Make Satellite Radio Less Useful?

from the bad-policies dept

Last week, we wrote about how XM Radio and the RIAA were getting increasingly concerned about someone who dared to make some software that would record XM radio feeds. According to people at Broadband Reports, XM has become so upset about this that they have pulled their PC receiver from the market while they look for a solution to this “problem.” It’s quite a world when it’s considered a problem that someone has made your service more useful. The note at Broadband Reports also claims that XM is considering removing USB ports from future equipment for the same reason. Both of these seem unconfirmed at the moment, so it would be nice if there were some real confirmation on either rumor. However, the satellite radio business is in a tough position. For all the success they’ve been claiming in signing up customers, they’re nowhere near profitability. Their capital costs are incredibly high, and the thing they need, more than anything else, is more subscribers. Shutting down tools that make their offering more compelling just means they’re making their job that much more difficult. Hopefully, it’s not true, and this is just a baseless rumor, perhaps caused by the product being out of stock. Update: has put up an article on the subject. While XM refuses to comment, others “close to the company” confirm the story. Hopefully, XM will realize what a bad idea this is.

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Comments on “Is XM Bending Over Backwards To Make Satellite Radio Less Useful?”

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Permanent4 (profile) says:

Let's face reality here...

Satellite radio will be irrelevant by decade’s end. It will eventually be replaced by something like mobile Napster 2.0, which will serve up custom radio playlists over wireless broadband for $9.95 a month, plus between $100 and $200 for an XM-like receiver that can play in your car or in a separate boombox.
Those receivers, which will probably be manufactured and sold by Samsung, will also have a big red “BUY” button on them, so you can purchase a song as soon as you hear it, then download it when you get home. “Hear the artist’s full CD” might be an on-demand option, too. Can’t do that with XM or Sirius.
All they’re waiting on now is for EDGE and 1xEV-DO to mature to the point where they can support such a service.

Quidam says:

Re: Let's face reality here...

that will be nice when EDGE/1xEV-DO are available as widely as satellite is. If I get off the beaten path GSM/GPRS is useless as is EDGE and other cellular technology until there are towers which can reach the four corners of the globe.

I use XM in my GM vehicle and love the fact that I get consistent use, in the mountains, in the desert and any other place that most cell technology doesn’t cover.

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