Apple patent application suggests iPod satellite radio support

“Although Apple has previously dismissed deals with satellite radio providers, it continues to explore the technology on its own, as discovered in a recent patent application by the company. The filing, published October 19th and originally filed in August 2005, refers to two distinct methods of integrating the iPod with satellite services. The first aspect of the patent describes the ability to tune “into a wireless signal (e.g., AM FM radio, digital radio, or WiFi)” using an iPod-style player with “the capability to accept accessories to add the necessary functionality.” While this may refer to Apple’s Radio Remote released late in 2005, the patent’s explicit mention of support well beyond AM/FM radio is significant and may signal a future add-on that would supply satellite radio directly to the iPod,” Electronista reports.

“More important still is the description of how such accessories would share information between the iPod and external receivers. In another section of the patent application, Apple refers to an “in-vehicle receiver-player” that would connect to both a music player and an in-car network and synchronize track data between the two connected devices,” Electronista reports.

More details and patent application illustrations here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “LinuxGuy and Mac Prodigal Son” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
Sirius shares spike in volume on ‘chatter of potential Apple partnership’ – October 18, 2006
Apple iPod+Sirius Satellite Radio? – July 06, 2006
Sirius would like to work with Apple; Howard Stern Sirius podcasts for sale via iTunes? – December 09, 2005
Apple iPod combined with Sirius Satellite Radio would be a music revolution – May 27, 2005
Sirius Satellite Radio CEO Karmazin discusses Sirius-enabled Apple iPod – May 25, 2005
Sirius CEO Karmazin looks to add satellite radio to Apple iPod; no deal – yet – February 10, 2005
Sirius has approached Apple on adding service to iPod – February 09, 2005
Analyst throws cold water on Apple iPod – Sirius Satellite radio deal – December 16, 2004
Analysts: Apple iPod + Sirius Satellite Radio ‘technologically unfeasible right now’ – December 15, 2004
RUMOR: Apple to add SIRIUS Satellite Radio (and Howard Stern) to iPod in mid-2005 – December 10, 2004


  1. The interesting thing is that if Apple move into digital audio by radio then, for the first time, they would require substantially different products for different nations. The majority of the world, except the US, has moved to terrestrial Digital Audio Broadcasts (DAB) which use the COFDM modulation scheme. The US is moving more towards satellite radio. Neither are remotely compatible with each other. Other countries remain firmly wedded to FM radio.

  2. I have a kenwood stereo in my car with both Sirius and iPod connectivity. Its interface sucks. If Apple is going to provide a car stereo that provides me both with the standard Apple attention to detail then I’d be the happiest camper in the world.

  3. Electronista is on drugs. SatRad is old technology that came into market 15 years too late. It will soon be made irrelevant by wide area wireless networks. By wireless signal, Apple may refer to other earthbound wireless network technologies, like WiMax, meshed networks with the transport protocol flavor of the month, etc.

    There’s really no future in satellite radio. There really never was. It’s been accepted as of late for all the wrong reasons. And it will decay just as fast as it rose.

  4. Re: Regista.

    “It’s been accepted as of late for all the wrong reasons”. You mean like providing content people want to hear and not just what Clear Channel provides. I bought Sirius for its programing and unless terrestial radio guts itself and becomes something new I will gladdly pay for satillite radio for years to come. Plus your also saying that the auto makers are wrong on their idea of including Sat Rad in alot of the new cars coming out. It will be to easy to drive outside of your idea of WAWN. I’ve never driven outside the area of Sat Rad. How would it have cost to launch those Satillites 15 years ago not to mention the receiver costs, the tech wasn’t ready and now it is.

  5. I don’t personally listen to satellite radio, but it seems to be growing in popularity all the same. Most of the new car stereos are both iPod and satellite radio ready. That being the case, iPod + sat radio could be a marriage made in heaven. Different strokes for different folks.

    The fact that satellite radio is based on older technology is irrelevant unless new networks (delivery systems) can deliver comparable content to a mobile device, which no one else is doing right now. Technically, the cell phone companies are probably in the best position to compete with sat radio for subscriber dollars.

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