Over the past week or so, I’ve noticed while listening to my XM Satellite Radio, that there have been ads noting that when radio “shock-jocks” Opie & Anthony come back from vacation later this month, their show will no longer be a Premium service. When they first appeared on XM a few months ago, you had to pay an extra $2.99 (I think).
First, let me state clearly that I don’t find O&A particularly funny, and after having listened to pieces of a few shows on the teaser channel when they first arrived on XM, I had pretty much heard all of them that I wanted to. But I have been loosely following their time on XM, primarily because I am a fan of satellite radio overall, and I want the market for both XM and Sirius to continue to grow.
At first blush, however, you might think that moving O&A to non-premium status means trouble in XM-land. I don’t agree. Having heard O&A, and been underwhelmed by their wit, I can understand why people might not be rushing in droves to pay an extra few bucks for their show. And granted, I was disappointed that XM lost the bidding war for Howard Stern. (I’m not a huge fan of Howard Stern either, but I do recognize his talent, and the success he could bring to either of the satellite networks.)
But in the end, I don’t begrudge Sirius… They have been having a harder time of things than XM, and so if Howard can buoy Sirius, I think it’s better for the future of the technology overall. I just hope that Sirius learns from watching how XM has been able to quickly adjust their approach with O&A based on the market and will do the same if the market responds similarly to Howard Stern.
By the way, for purposes of my blog, I’m considering satellite radio to be a mobile technology. It’s not a cell phone, but it’s clearly an important part of the growing wireless infrastructure. So in case you’re wondering why this is under “Mobile Tech,” now you know!