Congressmen Urge FCC: Include HD Radio and Ipods with Satellite Radio Merger

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Washington - May 2, 2008 - Representatives John D. Dingell (MI), chairman of the House Commerce Committee, and Ed Markey (MA), chairman of the Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet, sent a letter to FCC Chairman Kevin Martin urging the commission to impose certain requirements on the satellite radio merger proposal is if is approved. The key points of the letter:

  • Any electronic device manufacturer should be able to develop equipment that can deliver the satellite radio service;
  • Device manufacturers should be permitted to incorporate in satellite radio receivers any other technology that would not result in harmful interference with the merged company's network, including HD Radio, Ipod ports, Internet connectivity or other technology;
  • The new satellite radio company should honor the price options, including a la carte pricing, that they originally proposed.

According to the letter: It would be contrary to the public interest to permit the merged company to bar HD Radio capability or Ipod compatibility from being included in a new satellite radio receiver.

The letter also notes that the two congressmen not taking a position on whether the agency should approve or deny the merger, but only including the requirements if it is approved.

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