Sirius XM plans to raise some prices in March.
The increases are likely to anger some subscribers who are unhappy that some of their favorite channels have been dropped or now have a different programming sound since the satcaster consolidated several channels that had been programmed by either Sirius or XM. The actions come as the satcaster has big loan payments coming due.
Come March 11, subscribers with more than one account would pay about $9 extra for additional accounts, about a $2 increase and online users would pay $3 a month for the online service, which is free now. That’s what a customer-service representative told Reuters.
The satellite radio company needs to be careful about what prices it increases; as a condition of its merger approval, Sirius XM promised federal regulators it would not raise prices for most subscription packages for three years.
Subscribers would be able to defer the new increases if they sign up for a long-term contract extension or pay up to $500 for a lifetime subscription, according to the customer service rep. The company has not directly commented on the increases.
We’ve reported that Sirius XM has about $1 billion in debt coming due for payment this year.