On March 4, I presented a case study that summarized the merger between Sirius Satellite Radio and Xm Satellite Radio, and how satellite radio has become a template for a wireless culture. The two companies were the only two in their industry, and now that they have combined, .many think that they have formed a monopoly of sorts. Both separate entities offered over one hundred channels that varied from different music genres, to sports and news broadcasting. Also, many athletic events were given their own channel so that fans could listen in their vehicles or at home without using a tv. Both required a special installation to access their services and they had very competitive prices that were based on a monthly payment. More recently vehicle makers had been making deals with the two companies so that their service automatically came with the purchase of the car, and the installation was built right in the vehicle. Due to the amount of money that it took to start up this industry the businesses were not reaping any profit and eventually in 2008 they were forced to merge. After the merge, most recently in 2010 they have begun to see the profits of their services. Now they the Sirius Xm Satellite Radio company is working on reaching more customers, and designing their stations to be more user satisfying and run by the listeners.
The question of the week that was asked of us was, “How do older media serve as a template for wireless culture,” and this raised many new questions in class. I chose the Satellite radio industry because I think that it has done exactly that, and taken a somewhat outdated source of entertainment and made it technologically advanced and available to people everywhere. Also proposed to the class was the question of “who owns the media.” When radio first took off the main producers were companies like RCA and AT&T, companies that no longer have an interest in this medium. Today with every radio station playing songs based off of requests, satellite services that have a hundred different channels, and technology that allows you to only listen to the songs you want, it seems as thought the listeners own the media. If the producers were in charge of the media there would be a few select stations and we would be forced to listen to whatever they decide to play. The radio has come a long way from family shows and in home systems. We now have so many ways of accessing music and new technological advances in the franchise that it is obvious how the oldest form of radio was merely a template for our new wireless ways of living. With that being said, it is obvious how satellite radio is providing for the customer based off of the customers preferences and I encourage you to invest in their product if you enjoy music as I do.