Sirius XM Kills Off All of the One-Year Free Trial Deals Not Actually ‘Won’

A sad thing happened when I tried to log into SiriusXM on my iPad this morning – I was greeted with the message above. So I tried the other account I had grabbed when I posted about it a couple of weeks ago.

I had used Sirius for the 6 month trial that came with my car, but couldn’t justify the $9.99 monthly (back in 2007) fee – particularly as we moved and I changed from a hour commute to a fifteen minute drive. But I knew there was loads of cool stuff, so when I had the chance to grab the year ‘trial’ I did! My family still mostly uses Slacker, but I had just started playing with SiriusXM over the weekend, and was pleased to see that Dan was doing the same.

Sadly that has all ended … and is not coming back. And appparently I am not alone, as I just stumbled across another person with the same problem over at the Consumerist. They include an email reply from SiriusXM who said

bogus codes had been put out onto the internet” and that “those codes that were distributed were turned into 7-day trials.”

Personally I have mixed feelings about this – on the one hand the code was clearly not intended for general use (or we wouldn’t have been declared ‘winners’), so I wouldn’t have even called customer service. But on the other hand, to have sent out these emails with all of the details and then simply turn them into the lowest possible trial seems … like a bad PR move. I can grab a 30 day trial on their site without any special code, so why not do SOMETHING to make this positive? Also, these were not ‘bogus codes’ – the issue was that the contest was over, and no one from SiriusXM did anything until they saw a glut of sign-ups.

What do you think? Should SiriusXM have honored the 1-year deals? Or converted them to 6 months … or to 3 months … or to 30 days? Or were they right in dropping to 7 day trials? And what do you think of the idea that this was a ‘fake leak’ done intentionally to grab emails and get loads of downloads for their iOS/Android apps (and therefore visibility and bragging rights)?

Categories: Gear Bits

2 replies

  1. What is strange is that when I went to sign up, the code didn’t work for me…so I just deleted the code and tried it, and it totally went through! I signed in just now online and didn’t have any trouble. Bizarre!

  2. It’s not clear how many accounts were activated, but for me, this is the final nail in the sirius xm coffin. I think they could have made a positive out of this entire situation, and as we have come to expect from sirius xm, they didn’t.

    A very simple solution would be to tell users that they are allowed to choose complimentary 3 month subscriptions (one they already offer with new cars), or await further review (possibility of reverting any account to 7 day trial). Let people know, who are already aware they didn’t actually win anything, that they could loose it all or voluntarily choose a lesser account as a reward for doing the right thing.
    The humble bundle or games and now books allows people to pay what they feel is reasonable. They are not out of business, and continue to grow. If sirius tug at the heart strings of the people who used these “bogus” codes the vast majority would admit it and be willing to lend a hand. We all know that if it seems too good to be true, it is, but they are running a business. They need to be aware of their current and potential customers. Now when I get a vehicle equipped with sirius xm I know never to buy their subscription. Good job guys.