Is SiriusXM Radio Still a Thing?

Yes, Sirius XM radio still a thing. Whether it’s the “thing” for you is another matter entirely.

When Sirius and XM radio first became available, some pundits predicted this then-new development would be the death of broadcast radio. That prediction was a bit too hasty. After all, Sirius and XM were forced to merge so that both companies would survive. About eleven months after the merger, the company came close to filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. In February 2009, SiriusXM was bailed out by a $530 million loan from Liberty Media. Since then, this service continues to operate at a steady clip and remains popular with niche listeners looking for specific, mostly commercial-free content.

Here’s a closer look at the three main advantages that SiriusXM offers its loyal listeners:

  1. Availability: If you’re just driving around town, you can tune it to your local radio station for your favorite current tunes. If you’re taking a long trip, you’ll be spending a lot of time fiddling with the dial as you travel in and out of various broadcast frequencies.  This means a lot of guesswork as you try to find a station that’s compatible with the one you enjoy back home. With satellite floating around in space, you can pretty much get Sirius XM anywhere and everywhere you go… without constantly flipping the dial.<br /><br />
  2. No Commercials: TV and broadcast radio have one thing in common – commercials. Most viewers and listeners don’t like commercials. People mostly just want to hear what they want to hear, whether it’s the non-stop political punditry of talk radio or the constant thrum of their favorite tunes. Since SiriusXM is a subscription-based satellite radio service, most of its stations feature no commercials. Supporters of SiriusXM cite this as one of the satellite radio services best features.<br /><br />
  3. Choice: Satellite radio such as Sirius XM offers a huge variety of programming. Whether your tastes are in talk radio or any of the variety of musical genres, chances are good that there’s a station for it on Sirius XM. Whether you like punk, rap, or 80s metal – or bluegrass, outlaw country, or classic country – you’ll find a Sirius XM station that specializes in these genres. Nearly every musical taste, no matter how obscure, is represented on SiriusXM. It’s the same with talk radio; nearly every end of the political spectrum is represented on Sirius XM. This is called “curated content,” and it’s SiriusXM’s specialty.

So yes, SiriusXM is still a thing. Is it the thing for you? That depends upon what you’re looking for in radio programming. Let’s take a quick look at your radio listening needs and how each service – SiriusXM, Internet, and local radio – stacks up:

Does your music taste turn toward the rare and eclectic?
Yes: SiriusXM and Internet radio
No: Local radio

Do you prefer mainstream music?
Yes: SiriusXM, Internet radio, and local radio

Do you want personalized content?
Yes: Internet radio
No: SiriusXM and local radio

Do commercials drive you crazy?
Yes: SiriusXM and Internet radio (Some SiriusXM stations have commercials.)
No: Local radio

Do you prefer listening to radio through your phone or similar device?
Yes: SiriusXM and Internet radio
No: Local radio

Does your car have built-in Internet?
Yes: Internet radio
No: SiriusXM or local radio (Neither of these options requires an in-vehicle Internet connection.)

Do you prefer local radio programming?
Yes: Local radio
No: SiriusXM and Internet radio

In most cases, SiriusXM meets or exceeds most radio listeners’ needs. It’s superior to Internet radio because the latter requires an Internet connection, which only certain vehicles have. Internet radio stations such as Pandora and Spotify deliver personalized content, but again, this is only good if you have an Internet connection in your vehicle. iHeartRadio offers curated channels similar to SiriusXM. Much of the rest of Internet radio is made up of hobbyists playing specific and often obscure content. SiriusXM only falls short in the realm of local programming, but the content for the latter is drowned in a constant drone of commercials.

So yes, SiriusXM is definitely still a thing. If you believe it’s the thing for you, we carry a variety of SiriusXM accessories to help improve your listening experience.

About the Author

Jake Buckler
Jake Buckler is a cord-cutter, consumer electronics geek, and Celtic folk music fan. Those qualities, and his writing experience, helped him land a copywriting gig at Signal Group, LLC. He also contributes to The Solid Signal Blog.