— Sirius XM is preparing to launch its lowest- priced satellite-radio tuner at $59.99 and the first dualnetwork docking-speaker system capable of docking with XM and Sirius Dock and Play tuners.
Previous speaker docks were designed to work only with XM tuners or only with Sirius tuners but not with both types of tuners.
The tabletop docking speaker system is the $129 Sirius XM Sound Dock, an AC/DC model that comes with dual antenna to pick up XM and Sirius satellite signals. It also features a single multi-pin connector that mates with all XM and Sirius Dock and Player tuners offered in the past three years. It also mates with the wearable XMP3 player with XM tuner, wired headphones and recording capability.
The $129 speaker system will replace current XM-only and Sirius-only docking speaker systems. Shipment is sometime later this year. A more precise ship date was unavailable at press time.
The dock operates on eight C batteries. A recess in back lets users carry it from place to place. Other features include aux input and headphone output.
Compared with its predecessors, the dock boosts audio performance while occupying a lot less space, said aftermarket product marketing VP Sean Gibbons. The system, he claimed, compares favorably in sound quality with iPoddocking speaker systems at two to three times the price.
For the car, Sirius XM plans October availability of the $59.99 transportable XM Snap, which consists of an XM tuner/controller mounted to a flexible stalk that plugs into a car’s power port or cigarette lighter for power. The device uses the company’s PowerConnect technology to convert satellite-radio programming into FM radio signals, which are injected into the car’s behind-the-dash power wires through the car’s power port. The FM-modulated signal can be picked up by the car’s existing FM tuner if tuned to an unused FM station.
The Snap can be moved from car to car, but unlike Dock and Play transportable tuners, the tuner cannot be removed for use in a home docking cradle for playback through a connected home stereo system.
Snap was designed to simplify installation by eliminating the need to install a dashboard mounting kit for a Dock and Play tuner, the company said. To complete the installation, consumers need only run a thin wire from the Snap to a magnet-mount antenna on the vehicle’s roof. Snap also reduces dashboard clutter by eliminating the mounting kit and the need for a dangling power cord.
Snap was also designed to be simple to use, the company said. The device features five presets buttons, seek button, LCD screen and controls to select stations by genre.