Pegoraro writing in his Washington Post personal technology column points us to the various “technology duds” to avoid this holiday season. Writing about satellite radio:
Satellite radio. The merger of former competitors Sirius and XM has mainly yielded confusion and anger, as customers have found favorite channels disappearing from these still-separate programming lineups with no notice. The company says it’s giving each service’s listeners a chance to enjoy channels once confined to the other, but in the process, good, original programs have gone silent and familiar DJs have been kicked to the curb.
A receiver that could tune in to both Sirius and XM broadcasts would address this problem, but no such thing is in stores. Until this company puts one on the market, stops gutting its programming and starts communicating its plans clearly to customers, why reward it with your money?
Does Pegoraro not realize that when companies merge they merge their offerings and when that merge happens some things get dropped while others don’t? It is ridiculous to think that Sirius XM isn’t going to cut costs by merging programming especially given the state of their stock at the moment (closed at $0.17/share yesterday) and the state of the US economy in general.
And which company does he think is going to spend R&D money on a dual receiver when the company in question is in serious (no pun intended) financial distress? Hint: none.
I tend to agree that the programming choices that have been made are pretty poor. A good example is the loss of the XM Vox channel while replacing it with the Met Opera channel from Sirius. Vox was vastly superior and the Met Channel couldn’t have been that big of an income source. To top it off the guy responsible for programming Vox is still with Sirius XM on their Symphony Hall channel so it’s not likely they saved money.
I think Pegoraro’s overall statement is ridiculous given the current economic climate and even more ridiculous when considering how most business mergers work. Consolidation always happens. Thats the whole point.