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Satellite Radio Basics

by Retired: Senior Social Media Specialist on ‎07-18-2013 03:23 PM - edited on ‎10-15-2019 12:43 PM by Social Media Specialist Social Media Specialist (8,930 Views)

Thinking about getting satellite radio? This page helps to answer some of the most commonly asked questions.


What is satellite radio?


SiriusXM satellite radio is programming that offers numerous, coast-to-coast radio channels in digital-quality sound. Programming includes commercial-free music, favorite sports, exclusive talk and entertainment, comedy, news, traffic, weather and more. There's no downloading or managing playlists. Satellite radio also includes additional services for your car, like infotainment and traffic.


What are the advantages of satellite radio?


There are several advantages of satellite radio. It offers coast-to-coast coverage, which means you can drive from NY to LA without changing the channel. Artist-dedicated channels include E Street Radio, Elvis Radio, and Siriusly Sinatra. You can hear every team and every game from every major sport — no matter where you live, with 24/7 talk channels for each of the biggest leagues. Extras include driver feeds during NASCAR races, the NFL draft, a full-time fantasy sports channel and more.


The scoop on commercials: Commercials do exist on some of the XM music channels, but they are clearly designated on the channel lineups. Many SiriusXM sports, news, talk, comedy and entertainment channels have a limited amount of commercials, while most local AM/FM radio stations carry 10–15 minutes of ads every hour.


Where can I listen to satellite radio?


Satellites make satellite radio available wherever you are within the 48 contiguous United States and the District of Columbia, with Sirius also available in Puerto Rico (with coverage limitations). It's also available in bodies of water abutting the continental United States extending hundreds of miles into the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean Sea and Great Lakes. SiriusXM Internet radio is available throughout its satellite service area, plus Alaska and Hawaii. Aircraft and boat owners can subscribe to receive weather conditions and forecasts throughout these areas as well.


How much do subscription plans cost?


A variety of programming packages and billing plans are available, and you can find more details about pricing here.


What channels are included?


SiriusXM has a choice of packages with different channel lineups and prices. See the various packages by clicking here.


How do I activate satellite radio?


Activation is simple and takes only a few minutes. Visit SiriusXM's simple online activation process at or call SiriusXM listener care at (866) 635-5027.


How do I get satellite radio in my car?


There is a range of in-vehicle solutions, including tuners for connecting your Sirius- or XM-ready car stereo, dock-and-play radios that can be moved from car to home, docks that make your smartphone a SiriusXM radio, and even portables. View our Satellite Radio In-Vehicle FAQs for more details.


Can I get Sirius or XM radios in my home?


There are a range of products and services that let you listen at home, and anywhere else you want, too. SiriusXM Internet radio lets you listen on your smartphone or at your home or office computer.


How does SiriusXM compare to a fully loaded MP3 Player or Pandora?


Unlike an MP3 Player, satellite radio doesn't require any downloading, or building a library, or managing playlists — you just play it. And although Pandora is free, it is programmed by computers and algorithms with no song intros or "DJ speak" at all. Satellite Radio can bring you exclusive content including original MTV VJs on the '80s channel or Elvis Radio Live from Graceland. SiriusXM also has live games, call-in talk shows, and exclusive personalities that aren't found anywhere else.


What if I want to listen to SiriusXM online?


SiriusXM Internet Radio lets you listen to your favorite SiriusXM content on your computer, not to mention on most smartphones and other internet-enabled devices. You'll get over 120 channels of your favorite SiriusXM programming, conveniently located all in one place. As a SiriusXM Satellite Radio subscriber, you have the option to add SiriusXM Internet Radio to your subscription. SiriusXM Internet Radio is also available as an online-only, standalone subscription.