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As implied by the name satellite radio is broadcasted via satelllite to
its subscribers. The radio signal is broadcasted ground based
satellites to communicational satellites, which is then broadcasted
to your satellite radio device. A single satellite radio station is
broadcasted nationwide unlike FM or AM radio which are very locally
based and can only reach a limited area. Worldplace is the common
satellite radio broadcaster outside of the United States and XM and
Sirius radio are the popular services here in the US and Canada.
Just like cable television, satellite radio services are subscription
based. And just like you have to have a dish to get satellite
television, you have to get a satellite radio receiver to get the music,
news and entertainment programming; you canít just use a
There are hundreds of commercial-free satellite radio channels
offered by the two satellite radio providers. You do have to choose
just one set of channels, however, unless you want to subscribe to
both channels. You must have a satellite radio receiver for that
specific brand of satellite radio services, as well. The only commercials
youíll hear on satellite radio are occasional ads for the satellite radio
The best thing is that no matter where you are, all you have to do is
to bring the radio along with you and you can receive the satellite
radio services. This can be at home, in the office, in your car or at a
friendís house. Satellite radio is a great investment for people who
want lots of different kinds of music at their fingertips, including new
artists, all the news you need, and more sports than youíll find on any
AM/FM radio tuner.
Rumors have been flying around that Sirius and XM will form a ground-
breaking merger this year, uniting all 14+ million customers under one
banner. However, as of right now, you'll need to know what makes
each slightly unique.
Country Music Fans may favor the XM Radio satellite service, which
provides listeners with two extra stations - one focusing on
Americana Country like Robert Plant or Blackfoot, and the other
focusing on Folk Country like Tim Garrison and The Nitty Gritty Band.
Both stations have country music from the 80s and 90s, new country,
bluegrass and classic country.
Christian Music Fans may favor XM one. This service includes one
more Christian music channel than Sirius - in addition to Christian Pop
/ Rock and Gospel, XM also hosts a Southern Gospel channel with
Gold City, Greater Vision and The McKarneys.
Electronic Music Fans will prefer the Sirius service if they'd like a
Breakbeat/Old SKool station, in addition to the usual Trance/
Progressive stations that both satellite radio services provide. XM
has exclusive rights to acclaimed BPM, but Sirius has a special Dance
Rock Music Fans will probably prefer Sirius. While XM provides four
different "alternative radio" stations, a punk station, a heavy metal
station, a jam bands station, a college indie station and three classic
rock stations, Sirius gives subscribers roughly 23 stations with
everything that XM's service has -- plus New Wave, Glam Metal, Jimm
y Buffet, Grateful Dead, Elvis, Canadian rock, UK rock, Garage, 60s
Rock, 70s Rock and an additional punk/ska station. World Music Fans
will find that both service providers offering two French stations, but
Spanish-speaking subscribers will find XM the better option, since
they offer Rock En Espanol, Regional Mexican, Latin Pop, Latin Jazz,
Hispanic Rhythmic and Spanish AC. Sirius, on the other hand, has
only one Spanish music station for Latin Pop. Additionally, XM has a
station for African and a business station in Italian.
Rap and Hip Hop Fans may prefer XM because their service focuses
on more Soul and Funk, along with uncensored Hip Hop and Urban
Contemporary -- unless they're big Slim Shady fans, in which case
they may need Sirius Radio's Eminem station.
In some ways, XM Radio caters to the aging population with Good
Morning America, Casey Casem's Top 40 Countdown, Theme Time
with Bob Dylan and Wolfman Jack. On the other hand, Sirius Radio
goes after the 20-somethings crowd with Bam Marguera, Howard
Stern, Jamie Foxx and Tony Hawk shows. However, both satellite
radio service providers are likely to give you something you can enjoy.
Sports Fans will find many similarities in XM and Sirius service options.
For instance, both providers have ESPN, Nascar and NHL exclusives,
as well as both college and NFL football. XM gives better golf / PGA
Tour coverage and Fox Sports, while Sirius gives better NBA
coverage. On XM, catch shows with Jimmy Johnson, Dale Jr, Coach K,
James Carville, Luke Russert and Cal Ripkin.
With the Delphi SkiFi2 radio, you can get a sports ticker to show game
scores on your display screen and the SportsCaster comes with 30
sports presets programmed in. However, Sirius gives you game alerts,
30 presets and lists all your favorite teams in one category with the
Sportster and Streamer satellite radios. Additionally, get exclusive
programming with Jerry Rice, Daryl Johnston, Randy Cross, Adam
Schein, Shannon Sharpe, Ray Evernham, Tony Stewart, Rick Ackerman
and Frank Isola.
Whichever satellite radio service you prefer, you'll be surprised to
find that both are competitively priced at $13/month and most of the
radio components cost from $20 - $200. However, which ever
service you choose for now, you will still need to purchase a satellite
radio receiver and luckily, most of the satellite radios will work in your
home and in your car.