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Satellite Radio Has Gone Portable - Sirius vs XM

Updated on March 13, 2011

UPDATE: Sirius and XM merged and is now called SIRIUS XM Radio. New Hub click here!

Satellite Radio Has Gone Portable - XM vs Sirius

I for one have thought seriously about subscribing to a Satellite Radio Account. There have been several reasons why I have delayed signing up though. At first it was about the cost. That is not really an issue now. Then it was the choice of radios. I wanted one that I could use in my car and one that is handheld for my workouts.

If you have ever driven cross country you know what is like to loose a great radio station and then have to search for another. The scratch and static is annoying but you hope to be able to hear the end of the song or the next sentence of a talk radio host. Finally, when you can no longer understand or stand the noise you hit the search button.


Sirius Satellite Radio

Satellite Radio on the Move


Enter - Satellite Radio in the USA. Although Satellite Radio has been in existence before 2001 it was intended for stationary listening. In 2001 Satellite radio went mobile. Sirius and XM utilizing different systems started to provide similar entertainment services to the busy and always on the move US listeners. Sirius with its elliptical orbits and XM with its repeaters fill the bill.

The diversity of Satellite radio is achieved due to gigantic amounts of digital and CD (Sirius's 7 terabytes vs XM's 22 terabytes) storage and the ability to retransmit programming from off site locations such as sporting events, news broadcasts and entertainment venues. Files kept in storage is continually being updated and refreshed. Sirius and XM also maintain numerous studios where artists can perform their acts live.

Now back to my original attraction to mobile Satellite Radio. My interest began to peak once the portable-handheld radios began to surface. They are not inexpensive by any means but they are becoming more accessible. Below I have listed several Satellite Radios. Another option is to listen to Satellite Radio on an internet enabled PDA or cell phone.

The next hurdle is to decide which service (Sirius vs XM) to subscribe to. Although both services are very similar, their programming is different. The decision will be based on the availability of the type of programming that you prefer. For example, if sports are your favorite programming - research each to see which offers programming closest to your preferences.

Listed below are highlights of each service.



  • 125 channels
  • Commercial Free
  • Music, Talk Radio, Sports and Entertainment
  • Online Listening (available for Sirius Subscribers)
  • Stiletto 2 Portable Satellite Radio
  • Stiletto 10 Portable Satellite Radio
  • Sirius S50 Radio with Car Kit


  • 170 Channels
  • Commercial Free (Questioned by some)
  • Music, Talk Radio, Sports and Entertainment
  • XM NavTraffic and Weather
  • Online Listening (available to XM subscribers)
  • Inno XMP3 Player Satellite Radio
  • Helix Satellite Radio
  • SKYFi3 Satellite Radio


Personally, I am still on the fence. Talk radio is my favorite preference. There is Martha Stuart on Sirius and Neil Cavuto on XM. Other than that I like the idea of hearing my choice of stations no matter where I roam.


XM Satellite Radio in Pink!

XM Satellite Radios


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    • Debbie Cook profile image

      Debbie Cook 9 years ago from USA

      Thanks marky4232 for reminding me to udate this hub. I am aware that the two companies have merged. I will write an updated hub and will link it to this one.

    • profile image

      marky4232 9 years ago

      Let me know when you update it! please

    • profile image

      marky4232 9 years ago

      Think is important to know about this topics, Ben says you should update this, when is that happening, to have the latest information here? Great job by the way but could help a little update. You can know more about me in great web hosting services if you decide to set your own website

    • profile image

      Ben 9 years ago

      I think you need to update this hub. Aren't the two services now merging? I know there was concern about anti-trust, but I thought this was going through now.

    • Blogger Mom profile image

      Blogger Mom 9 years ago from Northeast, US

      Ah, if only XM was commercial free! I've heard many many commercials on air. But, we still subscribe. I have to say that I do enjoy my XM! =)

      Hopefully down the road they will merge, so that you don't have to choose.