Pics: New XM SkyDock satellite radio controller for iPhone - Orbitcast

Pics: New XM SkyDock satellite radio controller for iPhone

| 22 Comments
XM SkyDock
If you are following me on Twitter you've seen these photos already, but for everyone else - here's upclose and personal pics of the upcoming XM SkyDock satellite radio controller for your iPhone/iPod Touch.

I'll have a more detailed description shortly, but the quick take is this:
  • The SkyDock is actually a satellite radio with all the guts of an XM unit built in - but the interface will be controlled by the iPhone
  • A new XM SkyDock iPhone App will be released with the doc - this is NOT the same as the existing Sirius XM iPhone App
  • It's an XM, so you can listen to Howard Stern through the "Best of Sirius" add on package
  • Price will MSRP at $119.99, and it'll be available this fall

I really think Sirius XM Radio Inc. hit the ball right out of the park with this one. It's been a long time since we've seen a device worth getting excited about, and the XM SkyDock looks like a winner.

Some pics...

XM SkyDock

XM SkyDock

XM SkyDock

22 Comments

$119.99, for what? A plastic iPhone holder for SiriusFM?

"I really think Sirius XM Radio Inc. hit the ball right out of the park with this one. It's been a long time since we've seen a device worth getting excited about, and the XM SkyDock looks like a winner."

HA! This is just another crappy Melvin scheme.

This thing looks very cool. But I still don't get what it's for? If you already have XMRO for the Iphone can you use the dock without paying for another sub? Are you paying for a cool touch screen XMradio that I have to remove every time I leave the car? Seems like a silly product to me.

I was almost so happy as an investor and listener. They come out with an app no Stern (I understand the Sports channels not being there) and now there is hardware with all channels homerun - oh wait - it is XM sub only. WTF? How many different ways can this company disappoint me. They are always just this short of greatness.

By the time they get a Sirius one Stern will retire. I just hope it increases subs so my stock goes up and i can get out. I think i have had enough.

If they really were trying to “hit it out of the park” it would use the built-in capabilities of voice control on the iPhone 3GS to allow a driver to operate the radio by verbally giving commands. This is only a winner for people who wanted Howard. And, to get that a subscriber must purchase the unit and then the monthly subscription. This is just another weak attempt and demonstration of why SR can’t make it happen. Hitting it out of the park would have been just getting the contracts done with Howard, NHL, NFL, MLB, NBA and the rest to stream their sports for paid subscribers online. What’s the problem with this thinking? Then, they could charge higher rates or even the full subscription fee and use the iPhone as a platform. This new dock is just dumb.

This is a homerun for me!!!! I have been looking for a great charger that does landscape and since I move my XM from car to car or pay $8.99 plus got each additional unit in my cars I us for work this is a much cheaper optio. Than buying extra units or docks!!!! Thank you Sirius XM and Orbitcast!!!! Now if my wife sees this and it's released in time for my 10/4 bday!!!!! Please please please!!!!

I'm not really sure that this is "a winner". You must have an iPhone in order to use this. I don't even have a cellphone and am not planning getting one at this time. Even if I do get it, I won't be using SiriusXM on it. I have one radio - I'm not going to pay more money to this company when I can hear internet radio stations with better playlists for free.

I have to agree. If you're an XM subscriber there may be a benefit, but since I have Sirius only, I'd have to pay extra to listen to Stern and other Best of Sirius content? Forget it.

Sorry to say but the SkyDock is JUNK.

1) The tuner is in the Dock meaning the only place you can listen to Sirius XM is in your car. You cant get a dock for your other car or for your work or home, as if you do it will require additional subscriptions for each dock you have.

2)It ties up your iPhone. Your driving and get a call you need to fumble around to get the phone out of the dock to answer it. That makes it a saftey hazard. They should have built in technology to make it a speaker phone so that the caller could be heard on your car stereo speakers.

3) Its too expensive. You can get 3 or 4 dedicated XM Radios for what it costs for this, you got $299 for the iPhone plus another $120 for the mount. Way too high, and again you can't use it outside your car.

I'm glad Sirius XM is giving us more choices than chocolate and vanilla. I don't mind paying a monthly rate and have done for years. It's easy to answer a call while docked especially with Bluetooth. Like I said thank you Sirius XM for giving us choices. I would sooner cancel TV since I am in the car so much. Thank you !!!

Initially, it appears that you could transfer this from car to car. But what does the antenna look like? Is it like the current antenna system that would require some time rigging up?

I think it's a winner for those with an ipod Touch, but I'd like to know more about pricing, which I'm guessing will be the regular subscription rates.

I'm disappointed this is XM-only. The company really needs to unify its services better, and the best way to do that is release nice hardware like this that works with either service (or at least two variants of the same thing).

so i have an iphone and a sportster. when i saw this announcement at first i got all excited that i can get rid of another device in my car. but its the equiv of a XM radio so you have to pay extra for howard?! ugh, i guess im keeping my other device.

If this allows me to use my iPod touch to also use the other services -- not just Slacker and Pandora but WunderRadio, Last FM, and MLB -- then it's phenomenal, since I don't want to switch to AT&T if I can help it.

While this is all fine and good, what about those of us that do not, and will not, have an iPhone? I don't like Apple or or AT&T. Any chance SiriusXM could release a few new decent units for those of us that want a decent receiver? I know that XM has the XpressRC but I don't want XM or any of the "exclusive programming" on XM. Sirius is where it is at so let's get cracking.

(And no, I will not get XM with the best of Sirius, that is a scam and a half. The only people that win with that deal are XM subscribers that will get Sirius exclusive channels (Oprah? Really?).)

It seems that SiriusXM just wants to focus on the Internet and iPhone/iPod apps. I could deal with that if they actually put every channel on the Internet, but that isn't happening.

This leaves all Sirius customers in the dark. Why is it only XM? To force more customers to switch to XM and pay for Best of Sirius and pay $16.99? Why not make this an a la carte radio? Then I would be able to get 50 channels + Stern + Play by play for $12.95. And why are they still making NEW separate hardware for XM and Sirius. Aren't they ONE company?

IT doesn't tie up your iphone. The app is just a controller, and once you choose a channel, you should be able to exit the app, use the phone or whatever, and still listen to the station you picked.

Also, it's NOT just a dock...it's an XM radio requiring the iPhone or Touch as the controller! Looks like an aux out put in the charger....is that correct, Ryan?

i just wish it was a sirius radio, and not have to be bothered with the xm. i know it doesn't seem like it should matter, but as an owner of 3 sirius radios, i dont want to buy an xm and pay extra for the "best of" package.

This is a winner for those with iPhones and iPod touch's already. How many of those iDevices are in use? Millions and millions!!! This opens wide the possibility for SiriusXM to add a crapload of subscribers, add revenue and build a stronger company and better entertainment service. Those complaining there is a simple solution for you folks, don't buy it if it doesn't appeal to you.

So it's an XM unit that does not come with a screen or buttons. So it's like buying any electronic device or appliance for that matter where the user has to provide the control hardware.

"You like my new Microwave?"

"Where are the buttons and screen? how does it work?"

"Well I have to put my iPhone in it and load up an app that ties up my phone, but then I can hit the popcorn button and the timer shows up on my phone's display, Cool huh?"

Need to reply to this comment:

"2)It ties up your iPhone. Your driving and get a call you need to fumble around to get the phone out of the dock to answer it. That makes it a saftey hazard. They should have built in technology to make it a speaker phone so that the caller could be heard on your car stereo speakers."

You talking on the phone and driving is the safety hazard. Hang up the phone and drive.

What horseshit.

So Stern was not holding back Sirius from putting his channels on their iPhone app?

Then why are the channels for XM subscribers only? Why reward the people who initially signed up for the COMPETING service? Why penalize the people who got Sirius FOR STERN?

I think people are forgetting that this is NOT ONLY an XM TUNER, but it is also a full-functional iPhone.

I know this sounds ridiculous to bring up, but all applications on the iPhone have to be approved by apple. I cannot imagine that apple would approve an application that would not allow for the hands free use of bluetooth or a device that would make you fumble around in your car like an idiot, screwing with a docked phone, while you are on the road.

That being said, there is another feature on the xm skydock app that has picqued my interest. The Weather and Road button. Will this device fully integrate GPS and Weather data. Let's look at the iPhone capabilities; it is GPS enabled. Are we looking at a future GPS and NavTraffic enabled device? Is the radio just part of the bundle here?

From what I can research on the net, there are still too many unknowns about the Skydock and its coordinating apple iphone application.

And I think Wall St. has vastly discounted the potential here.