This morning during his live show, Howard Stern announced the new SiriusXM skill for Amazon Alexa. The broadcasting company also officially announced the new skill in a press release this morning. The SiriusXM Alexa skill will give listeners the ability to listen to any of the 200+ channels available on its mobile app through an Alexa-enabled device with voice commands. While the skill doesn’t allow users to search through the various channels, it does allow users to ask Alexa to play a certain channel by name or to listen to their favorite team’s game by saying “Alexa, play the Washington Nationals.”
Another Win for Amazon
The SiriusXM Alexa skill is yet another win for Amazon in the ongoing smart speaker wars. It gives the satellite radio’s 31.6 million subscribers a strong motivation to buy an Alexa-enabled device and another reason to choose an Amazon smart speaker over the competition. It’s unclear if Sirius will remain exclusive to Amazon, but right now having sole access to its 31.6 million subscribers is significant. Especially when you consider the number of subscribers for Google Home and the soon-to-be Apple HomePod’s exclusive streaming services.
As of late 2016, YouTube Red only had 1.5 million paying subscribers, with another million consumers on free-trial. Apple Music’s subscription service is closer, with 27 million subscribers, according to Tim Cook’s announcement at WWDC 2017. These numbers become even more disparate when you consider Amazon Prime Music. While Amazon has been quiet about how many Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers it has under its belt, Amazon Prime Music is free to anyone with an Amazon Prime subscription. Conservative estimates put that number at 66 million subscribers. Even if 10% use its music service, this still puts Amazon out front. Consumers can order pretty much anything they want or need from Amazon’s retail site. Now, the company is one step closer to letting consumers listen to anything they want through Alexa.