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XM, Sirius Still Working To Get FCC Emissions OK

7/21/2006 02:38:00 PM Eastern

New York — XM and Sirius continue to work to get the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) certification of select satellite radio models whose FM transmitters are said to exceed FCC emission limits, 8-K filings to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commissions show.

Sirius’s filing also shows that during an internal review, “We discovered that certain Sirius personnel requested manufacturers to produce Sirius radios that were not consistent with the FCC’s rules.” Sirius said it is “taking significant steps to ensure that this situation does not happen again, including the adoption of a comprehensive compliance plan, approved by our board of directors, to ensure that in the future our products comply with all applicable FCC rules.”

In April, Sirius directed makers of noncompliant radios with FM transmitters to suspend production and shipments to retailers. Sirius said it believes “our radios that are currently in production comply with applicable FCC rules” but noted that it and its manufacturers are “cooperating with the FCC to obtain new equipment authorizations for our remaining affected products.”

For its part, XM modified the noncompliant car docks for the Audiovox Express and Delphi SkyFi II plug-and-play units and tested them in an FCC-approved testing lab, which XM said found the units to be in compliance. The FCC ran its own tests, found the units to pass some tests and not others, and “dismissed” the units’ equipment certification, XM said. Dismissal allows XM to come back to the FCC after making modifications or conducting additional testing. “Our goal is to get approval within a matter of weeks,” an XM spokesman said.

The XM car docks incorporate the FM transmitter, and XM added a ferrite magnet to cables to reduce FM emissions. XM made similar modifications to the RoadyXT and Sportscaster plug-and-play tuners.

In its 8-K, XM said it’s also “working to limit interruptions in the supply of certain models of XM radios to retailers.” The SKyFi II and Audiovox Express are not in production, but retailers are selling through their current inventories, XM said.

Sirius could not be reached for comment.

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