Sirius XM on the iPhone (no hacking required) - Orbitcast

Sirius XM on the iPhone (no hacking required)

| 91 Comments
Sirius XM on iPhoneSirius and XM have had their fair share of iPhone related applications and buzz. First there was official word from XM of an XM Radio Mobile app for the iPhone. Then came uSirius and uXM to the mix. But there hasn't been much word on the mysterious StreamSmart project which promised a common platform for playing Sirius-XM on multiple devices, including the iPhone.

That is, until we got our hands on some details and screenshots from a covert operative inside the Alpha team.

The Sirius-XM application on the iPhone is still in the Alpha stage, which means it's still under heavy development and much of what you're about to see is likely to change.

The app is made by GeeksToolBox as part of the StreamSmart project. They've evidently partnered with NiceMac because the iPhone app is called StarPlayr, and there's a mention of the the StreamSmart association on StarPlayr's website.


Sirius XM on iPhoneAbove you can see the login screen. Our secret operative clear his login info because, well, no one wants to get caught.


Sirius XM on iPhone
Sirius XM on iPhoneIn the above screenshots you can see that it's displaying the Sirius channels only, but from what we hear XM is going to be part of this as well (the StarPlayr icon gives that away).


Sirius XM on iPhoneSince he's not logged in on these shots, we don't get the album art and artist/song information. But apparently, when you are logged in and playing, the StarPlayr displays the artist and song info (i.e., PAD data), plus it has a view lyrics button and album art on the main page.

And the best thing: no iPhone hacking required. Two files were sent out, and the testers just need to drag them onto iTunes to install. I'm assuming it'll be making its feature debut on the Apple Store.

Battery life is performing very well according to our tipster, because the audio is in a native format for the iPhone. Apparently "other" players need to convert the audio on the iPhone, which supposedly eats into the battery life. Sound quality is supposed to be very good as well.

More on this soon...

91 Comments

Is that the new logo for both compinies combined? The application looks cool but the logo looks even better!

sounds like a great app. any idea if its gonna be free or how much it will be?

Awesome!

Great, but how does Sirius benefit from this? Can you download Sirius content on the I-phone? I just want to see Sirius get a nickel a download. Too bad there is no news.

Sirius Xm Radio benefits because if you want to listen to Sirius Xm radio online, you need to subscribe.

They need to generate more revenue, and somehow get some HYPE into the mainstream. Maybe a SiriusXm sub for 5.99 if you have an I-phone?

This is great, mitchman1979k and Walt Z. are right. Ipod is a competitor but only in the sense you can't listen to two things at once. The same way cds competed with radio once upon a time. Anyway... This is a good way to take advantage of Apples market share without competing for it.

I can see another way to gain subscribers also they should attempt to integrate a system where you can remember songs for download. They could negotiate a commission from Apple, more revenue.

Also if it is available with the Itouch (because I hate what the phone data plan costs) I will buy one. The ideal one stop shop for an entertainment device. video/music/satrad/web/email browsing. That is one powerful little device.

as opposed to uXM or uSirius, if i can't run this in the background....i really don't care.

zero point zero

Wow coming soon? I am already running uSirius from Millard Software, and it works great, I didn't have to hack my iPhone I just installed the app through iTunes and viola. It is so nice to have Sirius radio streaming in here at work all day long.

sounds like it will be better on battery life though than uSirius and uXM... can't beat that!!! looks awesome.

How do you install usirius through itunes

It will run on the iPod Touch. One of the developers for StarPlayr has one.

Background apps is a limitation of running third party apps on a 120MB of memory for the device. If all apps ran in the background, then well, you know what would happen to your iPhone or iPod touch.

At the very least it will turn your iPod into a Stilleto over Edge, 3G or WiFi and then back into an iPod/iPhone or for whatever else you use it for, without the need to carry two devices.

The iPhone stinks, and I don't like it!

The iPhone sucks a bag of limp dicks. AT&T blows. Damn thing gets no reception.

/Jimmy off

Maybe they hired Millard to do this...

The developers of nicemac are:
Goodtime
GeeksToolBox
AllOutMacsToday.

AOMT is doing most of the client side programming for the iPhone. GTB server side. GT artwork, icons, etc.

YAH GREAT AND WE'RE DOWN AGAIN TODAY.......THIS STOCK IS GETTING COMPLETELY MUTILATED.....AND NO NEWS IS GOING TO BE GREAT ENOUGH SOON AS THE INSTITUTIONAL NAKED INVESTORS MUTILATE THIS ANY MORE.....

They probably won't allow downloading, because of the nature of the device. The Inno allows recording of songs for time-shifting purposes, but all the XM content is encrypted and can't be copied back to the PC. The apple is too open and with things like Jailbreak I doubt they'll be allowed to use it as a time-shifting or podcasting device. The RIAA wouldn't allow it.

recording no, but purchase should be ok... right?

concern with not being able to run it in the background is that it makes my iphone pretty much just like my Inno...only able to do one thing and one thing only.

full integration into the background like the ipod function would be choice; that way, i can email, text, and look up pron while enjoying the sweet sweet sounds of satrad.

else, i've already got a mobile satrad tuner....no reason for me to buy another.

"zero point zero

Posted by: dumpus"

What is Mat's IQ??

Any timieline on this thing? I can't wait. I listen through Orb.com but hate my computer constantly running.

this site sucks now

yeah but, but..........can you get HD on it too.........we have to have HD on the phone, have to have HD............... NAB DIE !!!!

RON AND FEZ, NOON TO THREE

Completely hilarious thread, I am running uSirius on my new iPhone 3G, I guess these guys are playing catch up. I think they need to work on there marketing strategy, usually you bad mouth someone else's work once you have something better, these guys got nothing, it's just too funny.

uSirius is rocking now... LOL...

Thank the lord. This app needs to be released ASAP! This is going to rock!

Thank YOU!

Looking forward to this for sure.

I can't get terrestrial radio in my office (not the stations I want to listen to anyway), and there's just times when my XM setup goes wonky. In fact, it happened this past week. I filled in the silence with AOL Radio on my iPhone. But thank goodness my XM problem cleared up finally...I was having withdrawals from my favorite stations.

Starplayr will be the only one that has access to a native ACC stream. uSirius transcodes and eats battery life because it has to transcode every packet. StarPlayr will stream natively.


I'm guessing that they're doing any transcoding from Windows Media to AAC on their own servers, and just directly streaming the AAC from there... username/password is only needed to access the metadata. I highly doubt this is being sanctioned by Sirius-XM.

I see two problems here, though... one, free ride users, who don't subscribe to either online offering and don't care about the song info; this won't make Sirius-XM happy... two, server bandwidth/capacity to handle everyone and all the listening that will be taking place.

Yippee...awful sound quality pumped through the iPhone! They need to upgrade the SQ on their internet streams, and INCLUDE it in the subscription fee (not charge extra for what many services provide for FREE). AOL Radio and Pandora's sound quality blows it out of the water, and guess what? It's FREE, and not programmed by FM hacks like Jon Zellner and Steve Kingston who treat the 300 song FM playlist like its a religion.

AT&T stores to sell SiriusXM products and services soon.

how are they doing that? someone should email them and ask how the stream will be native...

You will find out how when the app goes live this Fall.

if true that's huge... I don't see how though... wouldn't that kind of bandwidth be expensive?

I am so all over this!

I am dying to comment on this further but I signed an NDA with NiceMac LLC. All I can say this is huge and you won't believe you hears when the official news goes public.

this is great!!!!!!!bubba can call people to tell them he exists.priceless

Ok I am sure everybody on this board knows that the iphone could be a MAJOR benefit for SIRI. We can help to get this done: I just helped. All you have to do is follow the link below and tell apple that you will buy the iphone if the StarPlayr Sirius XM Player is added to the web applications.

5 star this post and keep it at the top.

http://www.apple.com/webapps/feedback/

Didn't "sloppy seconds" Struble and Ferrera promise HD Radio on the iPhone - LMFAO!

Less yapping....I need a download link! :)

Pandora is free on the new 3G iPhone - who in Hell would pay for crappy Satellite Radio?

"The iPhone sucks a bag of limp dicks"

HD Radio is a bag of consumers' limp dicks!

"YAH GREAT AND WE'RE DOWN AGAIN TODAY.......THIS STOCK IS GETTING COMPLETELY MUTILATED.....AND NO NEWS IS GOING TO BE GREAT ENOUGH SOON AS THE INSTITUTIONAL NAKED INVESTORS MUTILATE THIS ANY MORE....."

I love it! LMFAO!

http://www.apple.com/webapps/feedback/

The url above is probably not the right place to send Apple comments since that form is for feedback regarding web apps. The Sirius XM application is clearly NOT a web app, but a stand-alone application.

Art takes time. BTW, great work starplayr dev. team. _You've got me hook, line, and sinker.

This needs to happen ASAP. I'm sure all of you have played the AOL Radio app and have seen how something like that can really take a chunk out of those willing to pay for sat-rad. I actually find myself listening to the AOL player every now and then to get my quick bluegrass music fix (yes, there's a bluegrass channel). SiriXM should have released something like this back on 7/11.

What's the hold up?

ipod or iphone + satellite radio = winning combo

One thing that I think a lot of people are not realizing is that Apple needs to sanction this app before it can be offered in the App Store. If StarPlayr is not blessed by Sirius XM, and it would seem that it's not, then I can't see Apple approving it. And if Apple doesn't approve it, the only way it'll get onto your iPhone/iTouch is if it's jailbroken.

the problem with you logic is you assume too much and you don't know if Sirius XM is behind this App or not.

StarPlayr will only be available through the App Store, and not on jailbroken hacked phones.

If has not been submitted to Apple, but it will be by this Fall after it is out of beta. We are working with the powers at be and we fully anticipate it will be approved and licensed.

If they offer a completely seperate subscription (I like the $5.99 suggestion) for this service alone, and that saves me from having to buy new equipment, then that will give me something to think about.

Subscription pricing will be up to Sirius XM to decide. There will be other packages to only get the channels that you want to pay for. So possibly Sirius XM could apply this to their online player(s).

Keep in mind you would be saving money without having to buy additional equipment or a receiver. That alone can save you $7 or more per month.

Too bad it depends on WiFi or Edge or 3g for bandwidth. It was the obvious next move though. I thought they would sell it to telcos as an add on the telcos could bill.

Is there a handheld receiver for sattelite radio yet?

The competition kept sattelite radio from becoming as large as it easily could have, had they not forced consumers into a choice (3rd option, Neither) and now, there are plenty willing to stream decent content Broadcast has been ignoring for 30 years.

I like the logo. Nice that the doggie is on top of the waves.


I guess you heard about it...pissed off and mad about it. Aaaaahhhhhlllllliiiiiiiiiiisssss.......ahhhhhiiiiisssssssss!

Timeshifting is a great idea and there are ways that Sirius XM could do it without downloading. It would be easy for them to adopt and use the On Demand modal.


Even if it was a $50 app, I would still buy it.

When this becomes an official Apple Application, I am upgrading my BlackBerry Curve to an iPhone.

Ok I am sure everybody on this board knows that the iphone could be a MAJOR benefit for SIRI. We can help to get this done: I just helped. All you have to do is follow the link below and tell apple that you will buy the iphone if the StarPlayr Sirius XM Player is added to the web applications.

5 star this post and keep it at the top.

http://www.apple.com/webapps/feedback/

Can you send text messages with the Iphone?? i heard you cant.
Email wont work for me. I have to many people that dont have email capabilities on thier cell.
getting siriusXM would be so awsome.

You can send text (SMS) messages with the iPhone. You can't send picture (MMS) messages in the traditional way, but you can just email them out to the other parties MMS server to send them.

Here's the new future company logo Apple,Sirius,XM..Yeah baby..

Wait, the audio is in "native format"? This means they're broadcasting in AAC?

so how long can you listen before you hit the ATT cap?

Broadcasting in the streaming natively in AAC is entirely possible. Judging by the logo, NiceMac must be talking to Sirius XM otherwise using the Sirius XM logo without approval by Sirius XM would constitute trademark infringement. So if NiceMac was on their own, they would have to change the logo to something else. But being that is looks real, I think you can put two and two together here. My guess is the two companies have not come to an official agreement yet otherwise you'd be seeing press releases of this news all over the 'net. Slick, official looking logo, along with the native format could only mean one thing.

Broadcasting the stream natively in AAC is entirely possible. Judging by the logo, NiceMac must be talking to Sirius XM otherwise using the Sirius XM logo without approval by Sirius XM would constitute trademark infringement. So if NiceMac was on their own, they would have to change the logo to something else. But being that is looks real, I think you can put two and two together here. My guess is the two companies have not come to an official agreement yet otherwise you'd be seeing press releases of this news all over the 'net. Slick, official looking logo, along with the native format could only mean one thing.

This is interesting as XM does not charge for either online or high-speed, both are free with your subscription price. This is not the case with Sirius. So in a merged company am I now going to have to pay for an online stream? If so, my bill just went up. So much for the consumer.

That said, the iPhone is indeed a beautifully marketed, way overpriced piece of shit.

If they get Stern on the Iphone it will be great!

I have Sirius and I don't have to pay extra to listen online...

What if Apple bought out Sirius??

WHy would Apple want a crutch like siriusxm? that would be a waste.

Why would Sirius allow a 3rd party to present their service to it's Subscribers? This would be a good app. but what's the benefit for Sirius to allow this? If Sirius had any sense they would already have had a official app. out, but then again that would require a management staff with a pulse.

Also as someone pointed out above why would anyone waste time and money on satradio when there are plenty of other and much better options when it comes to the iPhone and the internet.....

You don't know jack about Sirius. There are a content company, not a hardware or satellite company.

Why Satellite Radio Will Fail
By Rich Duprey May 2, 2007
Say goodbye to satellite radio. As a driving force in entertainment, it's already past its heyday. Just as quickly as it exploded on the scene, satellite radio is becoming yesterday's news.

It's not because XM Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: XMSR) was able to add only half as many net new subscribers in the first quarter as it did last year. Nor is it because Sirius Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: SIRI) added only half a million new subscribers based on the strength of some sketchy new-car production sales schedule (auto manufacturers account for the bulk of new subscribers). Forget that the number of people who buy their satellite radio receivers in-store fell by more than 50% this year and that the churn rates -- the number of customers the radio stations lose each month -- continue to climb.

No, it's something less statistical than all that, more ephemeral. Satellite radio will fail because it sucks.

I'm not an early adopter of most technology, and I got my first Sirius satellite receiver only when Howard Stern announced that he was leaving terrestrial radio. Being a fan of his comedy, I was willing to test out what a no-holds-barred Stern could be. For the most part, I find his show to be the one bright spot in what has otherwise become a wasteland reminiscent of ground-based stations. Yet one entertainer cannot keep an empire from crumbling.

Teenage wasteland
The biggest problem for satellite radio is that it is morphing into terrestrial radio, albeit without the commercials. Let me list some of the reasons I see satellite radio failing.

Limited playlists.
Annoying DJs.
Lousy reception.
You would think most of those would apply to any terrestrial radio station run by Clear Channel Communications (NYSE: CCU), but they're symptoms of the problem with satellite radio.

Play it again, Sam. And again and again.
I definitely don't miss the insipid commercials I used to find on regular radio, but with 24 hours of airtime to fill up, you'd think the satellite companies could maybe mix up the playlists once in a while. How many times can Sirius' rock station Octane play Hinder's "Lips of an Angel"? And I think there's some Carpenters song played every 12 minutes on its Moving Easy band.

I listen to just a handful of stations on Sirius, and believe me: You can just about set your watch to when a particular song is going to come on. Can't they play some of the lesser-known songs by the artists, just for variety? While I have a Sirius radio, the same failings apply to XM. Repetitive songs seem to be an industry-wide issue that I thought satellite radio would resolve.

Hey, Mr. DJ!
Perhaps I'm showing my age, but there's a lot of '70s music I like, so I tune into Totally '70s. I'm left to wonder, though, whether DJ Barry Williams (a.k.a. Greg Brady from The Brady Bunch) is required to introduce every song with some pun pulled from a song's lyrics. What terrestrial radio has never learned -- and satellite is following closely in its footsteps -- is that DJs rarely matter.

Anyone can spin a record. Certain personalities -- Howard Stern or Opie & Anthony -- are able to differentiate themselves, but then again, they're not playing music. Most DJs are forgettable, even Octane's Kayla, once the music starts.

CBS Radio (NYSE: CBS) actually has come to this conclusion. Its nine Jack FM stations -- in the New York metro area where I live, it's 101.1 -- have done away with DJs and simply have a generic, smart-aleck voiceover making commentaries between songs. And the music's not too bad, either, though there are still commercials. Satellite ought to take a cue from CBS.

Home on the range
I drive the entire length of the New Jersey Turnpike a lot. It is exceptionally rare for me to be able to listen to an entire song without the signal cutting out. Sure, you're warned about tall buildings blocking signals sometimes, but there are a lot of flat areas on the turnpike without buildings, trees, or even animals where the receiver suddenly reads "No Signal."

In that respect, I think XM has Sirius beat. You can be deep inside a garage and still get a signal with XM. I've found myself stuck in plenty of dead zones with my Sirius, or I'll be sitting at a traffic light inching forward to find just the right spot to get the signal to come back on. Blue skies and green grass might make for great song lyrics, but they're no guarantee of getting a radio signal.

Satellite radio once held a lot of potential: commercial-free, unfettered by the FCC, and able to play whatever the stations wanted. Instead, it's opted for safety. As big-name radio executives like Mel Karmazin moved to satellite, it became more like terrestrial radio. And when there is little difference between what your local Zoo station is playing -- woo-hoo! wheee! yuk! yuk! -- and what you can find on satellite, not even the merger of XM and Sirius can save it.

Ha! An article from May 2, 2007. Do you have this article clipped out and pasted in some scrapbook too?

pssst.....pfreak

Sirius bought XM, get over it. Besides, before Sirius BOUGHT XM, Sirius had free internet listening, always did, for subscribers before XM gave up trying to charge for the same service. If you are going to whine, at least have a few facts.

Listening to Sirius over the iPhone is a waste of money. There is plenty of internet radio which is both better and free. This app is like a hand rail for the newb's

Why would anyone pay for such an app when there are a bunch of free radio apps that already have more content than XM/SIRI? Just for Howard Stern? There's FlyTunes (800 channels+video), AOL (130 CBS radio stations), Pandora, LastFM, VSnax, AllRadio - all free apps. Apparently this site has a ton of SIRI Fanboys who will apparently buy anything (see LAPTOP GAMER, above).

The statement that you need more battery power to decode a shoutcast stream vs. an AAC stream is ridiculous. The differences in power usage of the CPU are negligible compared to the big power soaks of the radio deck(s) and the screen. That statement sounds like something a marketing guy dreamed up to give AAC streaming some zip.

Since the iPhone does not support Windows Media Streams or the Advanced Streaming Fomrat, it would have to use a software decoder. If streaming in a native format, the iPhone can take advantage of its built in H.264 hardware coder.

Decoding 1 ASF packet at time and the playing it back is very CPU intensive vs. decoding an H.264 movie or decoding AAC audio. And yes that will drain the battery and the processor will start to heat up running more clock cycles than it needs to, to play back a native audio format.

ASF/WMA/WMV is a Windows format that the iPhone does not natively support and would require a software decoder on small 400 mhz processor with a limited amount of RAM. Bring a native AAC or MP3 streams would be a much better proposition and also would result in a much more reliable player and better control over the stream buffering and handling the packets via Core Audio works quite well.

Terrestial Radio sucks and Free Radio sucks. Once you've experience Sirius XM Radio, you do not want to go back. I love the commercial free music stations and even the talk radio stations such as Stern do not have very many commercial breaks for the 5 hour show.

Is Stern on your Free Radio?

Best of all the talk and music stations and their content simply rocks! Sirius is a media giant and once they realize this, they will go after the market.

Once you've experience free Internet Radio, FlyTunes (800 channels+video), AOL (130 CBS radio stations), Pandora, LastFM, VSnax, AllRadio etc. you'd be ignorant not to drop SiriusXM. The newb's haven't yet learned SiriusXM is doing nothing but losing value it's no media giant. IF Stern was on free radio he'd still be relevant, his show SUCKS since he left terrestrial radio, and funny how money means less than 4 shows a week most weeks presenting a show which doesn't have a 1/8 of the listeners he had back in his terrestrial radio days when he earned the title of King of all Media, now he is nothing but Imus II.

My music stations on Sirius do not have Commercials. Commercial Free Music and a good variety is what I like. iPhone + SiriusXM = For The Win

Go StarPlayer Go! You can do it!

I need help with running Usirius on my Iphone 3G. I have downloaded Usirius & got an Orb account but when I go to play Howard Stern on my Iphone the Quicktime logo is there but I get an arrow with a line through it and no sound. Any ideas? TYanks

Yes, we would buy this just for Howard Stern. Nice entry from Clear Channel lover...oh, except it's terrestrial radio that sucks...satellite rules. I bet you think cable tv is just a fad too. Perhaps you should try some brain stimulation exercises...you need it.

If you're looking for free, I'll come over and sing folk music for no charge and save you the expense of any hardware to listen to your free radio. ...same logic you just used.

Sirius-XM rules...it sounds like if you're against it...you have never experienced it.

haha, is this Eric the Midget? Get a life and chill out. Howard is better than ever and you're a little jealous...baby. wah, Howard isn't on terrible radio anymore...wah....me want binky...wah....

Hmmm, isn't satellite radio a form of media...which Howard now dominates and is soley responsible for increasing Sirius subscribers by 10x in one year... hmmm....another media conquered by Howard....that's a confirmed KING OF ALL MEDIA...

Go back to sleep, pop your pimples, and jerk off to x-box.

haha, is this Eric the Midget? Get a life and chill out. Howard is better than ever and you're a little jealous...baby. wah, Howard isn't on terrible radio anymore...wah....me want binky...wah....

Hmmm, isn't satellite radio a form of media...which Howard now dominates and is soley responsible for increasing Sirius subscribers by 10x in one year... hmmm....another media conquered by Howard....that's a confirmed KING OF ALL MEDIA...

Go back to sleep, pop your pimples, and jerk off to x-box.

ooTunes Radio 2.0 can stream XM to your iPhone. Only $4, does a lot more than just XM and it's already available in the app store.

I would absolutely love to be a tester for this app. As a local musician, and sirius subscriber for the last 3-4yrs, this app would give me more options musically to further my professional party band. Please let me test this on my iphone!!!
=-)

I would absolutely love to be a tester for this app. As a local musician, and sirius subscriber for the last 3-4yrs, this app would give me more options musically to further my professional party band. Please let me test this on my iphone!!!
=-)