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SiriusXM: “Connected cars absolutely an opportunity”

Pay-radio operator SiriusXM is working hard to deliver extra functionality to its subscribers’  vehicles, and meet drivers’ demand for additional services. CEO James Meyer, speaking at the Bank of America/Merrill Lynch Communications & Entertainment conference on September 15th, emphasised his enthusiasm from new services.

“I see the connected car absolutely as an opportunity. For us it’s going to build capabilities into the vehicles [which] is going to have a profound effect both on our product and on the way we manage our subscriber lifecycles and the way our customers deal with us from a service and a care standpoint. So I believe connected vehicles are a huge opportunity for Sirius XM and that’s the way we’re going after that market. Obviously, there are other competitors that come with it. But I am less concerned with that and more concerned with how do we harness [connectivity] and make it great for us.”

Meyer was being interviewed by Jessica Reif Cohen from the bank, and he said that the pre-owned (second-hand) car market was now extremely important to SiriusXM.

Indeed, Meyer, while admitting that extremely long-term forecasts were something of a challenge, he nevertheless told delegates that provided there wasn’t a significant recession he expected that some 75 per cent of all new cars would be subscribing to SiriusXM radio. Meyer added that the used car business was some 2.5 times bigger that the new car market, and that it was important to have a relationship with these car dealers in order to see them renew subscriptions to SiriusXM.

The broadcaster is planning the introduction of a new model receiver (360L). Meyer explained its functionality. “360L is a new technology for us that’s aimed at making the integration of wireless connectivity and our satellite connectivity seamless in the vehicle.  I am really pleased with how the automakers have taken up wanting to have this capability in their vehicles. That said, I’ll add a caution. With many vehicle makers right now in our business, we’re working on the 2020 model here right now. I mean literally, we’re working on model years that are out, three, four and five years. So, any new technology just takes time to go through their development cycles.”

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