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Satcasters: C3SR Is ‘NAB’ Group

They also believe they already have complied with the interoperability mandate.

The satellite radio companies say the recent filing by the Consumer Coalition for Competition in Satellite Radio is “replete with misstatements of law and false allegations” regarding the purpose of highly confidential documents.

They responded to the letter from Sen. Brownback about C3SR, which Sirius and XM call “the NAB Coalition” because it has some funding from the trade group.

“Far from demonstrating a violation of the FCC’s requirements, the documents reflect the substantial efforts Sirius and XM made not only to design an interoperable radio but also to analyze the possible production and commercial introduction of interoperable radios,” said the satcasters in their June 6 letter to the commission.

The FCC required the satellite radio companies to develop designs only for interoperable radios. They say they have met this requirement, and actually developed and built prototype versions through a joint development agreement with Interoperable Technologies. They added the “commission left the decision to manufacture, import, distribute, deploy, market and sell interoperable radios to the private sector.”

The companies have said it would not make economic sense to bring the radios to market, since they usually subsidize radio production “and would not be assured of recouping these subsidies for interoperable radios through subscription fees.” Without such subsidies, the cost of an interoperable radio “would not make them commercially viable,” they stated.