Just throwing out some thoughts to give a little balance to ideas that keep popping up...
Suppose that the interoperable radios came out to retail. They would have cost more money to make. Since they would have been subsidized it would have cost the companies more money. Whoever grabbed more of the others' listeners (Sirius) would have made out, but the other company (XM) would have REALLY lost out.
On the surface this would have seemed good for SIRIUS, but this is a "what if" scenario. So I will propose my own "what if" scenario based on this...
So let's assume that every radio was interoperable. Sirius is able to grab enough listeners from XM to cause them to go bankrupt or to sell to another company.
In order to get all of these listeners, Sirius would have had to spend even more money to outbid XM for content. Giving them nice subscriber numbers but possibly even more debt.
So XM sells and Google, Apple or Microsoft take over, since they could easily outbid Sirius. Now they can simply start outspending Sirius and grabbing customers back for lower rates, even at a loss, just to get the sheer volume of subs. The way Microsoft and Sony sell Xbox and PS3 at a loss to be able to sell a greater volume of video games...making up for their initial losses.
Google or Apple would have been able to crush SIRI in the advertising arena.
Then in two years Stern goes to Apple Sat or Google Sat and bye bye Sirius.
So I would say be careful what you wish for.
There are huge pains for investors right now, but the initial gain is that Sirius has all of the available satellite spectrum. That means they are in a much better position to compete than if they only had half of it.
So call me crazy, but I'm glad that the interoperable radios never came to retail. Even if this was some "conspiracy" I only see long term benefit to the combined entity. What is good for the company is good for investors. So I would say ixnay on the onspiracy cay.
Unless of course some investor(s) decided that it was in their best interest to try to damage a company that is going to eventually make them a lot of money. I would view these actions as very selfish or incredibly shortsighted.
The only thing we know for sure is that Long SIRI investors will either make or lose money. I'm betting on the former. But time will surely tell.