XM + Sirius = More Options

Sirius and XM may still have separate web sites, but they're rapidly merging their resources following their announced (and FCC approved) merger. Rather then painfully having to choose one service over another (or even more painfully, having to pay for both) the merger will provide the best of both worlds.

In particular, one of the corporate promises that convinced the FCC to allow the merger was the committment to provide a la carte programming options, where customers can pick and choose the content that's right for them. And lo and behold, that is now becoming available. With the downside of complication and potential customer confusion, the new options look extremely tasty . . .

Perhaps most interesting is the $4 per month Best of Sirius and Best of XM plans. As the name implies, XM subscribers can get some good Sirius stuff (like Howard Stern), and vice versa. Check this out: The Best of Sirius on XM: Howard Stern, Martha Stewart Living Radio, Sirius NFL Radio, Sirius NASCAR Radio, and Playboy Radio. The Best of XM on Sirius: Oprah & Friends, NHL Home Ice, The Virus, Public Radio featuring Bob Edwards, PGA Tour Network, and College Sports and NBA.

Wait! There's more! XM customers can also subscribe to Mostly Music and Mostly Talk plans. Each offers a selection of channels for $10/month. Conversely, on new Sirius hardware, you can receive 50 non-premium a la carte channels for $7/month, with additional channels available for 50 cents/month.

Good deal. I now officially approve this merger. As long as they don't ask for a bail-out. -Ken C. Pohlmann