Skip to main content

Review: A Year with SiriusXM for iPad

Okay, I'll grant that it probably hasn't been a full year. We're reviewing the latest version of the SiriusXM app for iPad, which is excellent, and should be a mandatory purchase for all SiriusXM subscribers. 

For most of us, satellite radio is strictly for the car. Getting their signal in your house was a ridiculously difficult process - you needed to purchase equipment, and use an antenna near a window. I wasn't interested. 

I also wasn't particularly interested in their browser-based internet radio (even though I had it on a free trial.) It was more or less tied to the computer, and my speakers weren't great. 

Then, SiriusXM released a mobile app, (and worked out their contract issues with Howard Stern, making his broadcasts available on the app), and Apple introduced AirPlay, making every bit of iPad audio stream-able to any AirPlay device. Suddenly, this was a seriously compelling product. I could listen to any SiriusXM content, over my home stereo system? Wirelessly? No antennas?

To sweeten the deal a bit further, SiriusXM recently simplified their billing and announced the "All Access" subscription tier, which makes everything SiriusXM offers (all channels, plus internet radio) available for $199/year, or $19.99/month. 

For me, it was a no-brainer. It meant that I could continue getting all of the services I was already receiving (car, internet radio, navigation), for about $3 cheaper/month than I was already happily paying. The last piece of the puzzle was the iPad app interface. 

I'm happy to report that the app gets the job done, and more. The interface is clean, responsive, and simple to understand. With the iPad app, you can browse channels and see what's currently playing - that's functionality my car doesn't even provide. Even better, certain shows from prior days are available on-demand - so if you're interested in a particular Stern interview (for instance), you can dial it up and fast-forward to the moment you'd heard about. 

In short - if you're a SiriusXM subscriber and an AirPlay fan, you should sign up for internet radio and park the SiriusXM app in the hallowed "bottom row" of apps on your iPad - right next to the DirecTV app. 

(Just make sure, if you're listening to Stern, that any outdoor speakers are off. Especially if the neighbor kids are outside.)


Popular posts from this blog

Not All AirPort Extremes are Created Equal (UPDATED)

I'm looking for a used AirPort Extreme. In all the usual places - eBay, Craigslist.  I'll probably get one this week. Why? It's a long story.  A while back, I picked up an AirPort Express A1084 router on Craigslist, and found that it was incompatible with my AirPort Utility and wireless-n network, even though it looked *identical* to the current model of AirPort Express.  So, I wrote a post on this blog about the different types of AirPort Express routers, noting that if you're looking for used Airport Express routers to extend your AirPlay network, you'd better seek out model A1264. In the months that followed, Apple updated the AirPort Express again, changing the form factor (it looks like a little white AppleTV now), adding simultaneous dual-band support, and giving it model number A1392.  ASIDE: I'm not totally convinced that the form-factor change was an improvement. The A1264 plugged directly into the wall, which was incr

Review - WOW Ultra TV vs. DirecTV HR34 Genie

Here in the Chicago suburbs, we had two options for whole-home DVR services. We initially went with WOW Ultra TV, and after about 4 months, we switched to DirecTV's HR34 Genie system. (Neither Verizon FIOS nor AT&T UVerse were available in our area, so we can't review those. I haven't used Dish's Hopper, either. This is a straight compare/contrast review of WOW vs. DirecTV.) Both Ultra TV and Genie have their plusses and minuses. Both offer 1080p output, but that's primarily for the menus, as most TV content is provided at lower resolutions.  Both systems have a similar design architecture - a central hub, with multiple tuners and a large hard drive, recording and storing all TV shows, and distributing them to televisions around the house upon request.  Both systems also bring a number of "add-on" apps and have ways of accessing "on demand" content.  We've had each system for enough time to really put them through

Review: NuCore Flooring from Floor & Decor

This NuCore flooring review will also function as a Basement Update: We're finally, officially moving forward on the Phase 2 finish work.