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Part I: Today’s Technology > Tuning in to Satellite Radio: XM and Sirius

Chapter 26. Tuning in to Satellite Radio: XM and Sirius

If you’ve ever been fed up searching the radio bands for your favorite category of music, or have been frustrated by the poor quality of the reception once you find something you like, satellite-radio could well be for you. Satellite radio provides a large numberof digital channels that are mostly commercial free. It is one of the first major advances in radio technology since FM appeared about 40 years ago. The two main providers at the present time are XM Satellite Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio. XM first launched on September 25, 2001 and Sirius on July 1, 2002.

Both companies provide digital-quality music, news, and entertainment directly from their satellites to cars and homes in the United States. XM uses two Boeing 702 satellites, one named “Rock” and the other “Roll,” to beam their service directly to listeners. Their programming includes 100 channels in categories such as decades, country, hits, rock, urban, jazz and blues, dance, Latin, world, classical, kids, news, sports, comedy, talk and variety, and premium (Table 26-1). Sirius also offers 100 channels in similar categories.


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