Monday, January 08, 2007

CES Update - Sirius

January 8, 2007

As has been the case for the past couple of years, both Sirius and XM are demonstrating video at the 2007 CES. Our “man on the street” in Las Vegas called in a report about 10 minutes ago after visiting the Sirius booth.


Sirius has stated that they are close to announcing video content partnerships. This announcement is expect to come out of the auto shows rather than CES. The demonstration vehicle at CES is a Ford Expedition, and the live feed being demonstrated is Cartoon Network. Whether Cartoon Network is among the content providers that Sirius is striking a deal with is unknown, but the fact that they are using the networks content at CES may offer a clue as to one of the content providers.


The video content will require the use of two antennas that need to be spaced 3 feet apart. The decision to go with a two antenna system was brought about by the fact that the company could deliver the video content with less bandwidth. Conservation of bandwidth is a decision that enables higher quality in other areas, or can allow additional video content. Another interesting note is that the video service Sirius is demonstrating is an analog signal. The video feed resolution looks great on monitors of up to about 11 inches (bigger monitors may begin to see a picture quality drop).


The folks from Texas Instruments swung by the Sirius booth and got into some in depth conversation regarding capabilities. The discussion quickly turned towards the ability to deliver the content (video or music) wirelessly from the antenna(s) to the receivers, and whether Sirius would find such technology valuable. One would imagine that Texas Instruments is having similar conversations with XM. At first blush, it would seem that Bluetooth could fit the bill, but the level of bandwidth that Bluetooth can handle would in theory sacrifice sound quality.

More CES information to come.

1/08/2007 02:40:00 PM

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