Review: Sirius Stiletto 2
The Stiletto 2 has built-in Wi-Fi for those times when you are unable to acquire a satellite signal. This allows you to listen to channels available on Sirius Internet Radio over any available Wi-Fi network. You can switch to the Internet Radio option from the Home menu. Once this option is selected, the device will try to connect to an accessible Wi-Fi access point or hotspot.
The Stiletto works over 802.11b/g wireless networks and offers WEP and WPA encryption. The one drawback to listening over a wireless connection is that Sirius Internet Radio is streamed and not broadcast. Because of this, certain features that are standard with Sirius are unavailable in Internet listening mode, such as the inability to record, pause, or rewind live content. Also, about 50 of the 130 radio channels are unavailable in Internet mode.
The Wi-Fi option is intended to be used only for backup, when you can’t access a satellite signal. We found that we never had to rely on Wi-Fi, regardless of our location. We received a strong enough satellite signal in our car, home office, outdoors, at the health club, and in the local library, cafes, and restaurants. We also, of course, tested the Wi-Fi at a variety of hotspots and over our home network, and we were able to connect easily every time.
If you find yourself in a location where cannot acquire a satellite signal or access a Wi-Fi network, you can switch to your MP3 library or list of previously recorded songs or radio programming.
With satellite access to over 130 music, news, sports, and talk show channels, we’ve always been avid fans of satellite radio. Once you experience it, you’ll never want to go back to regular radio programming. If you’re thinking of trying it out, or if you want to upgrade your current satellite player, we believe that the Stiletto 2 is the best portable satellite radio on the market. Since this doubles as an MP3 player, we even prefer the Stiletto over our iPod.
One drawback is that satellite radio can be an expensive addiction since a monthly subscription is required. Packages start at $9.99 a month, with the opportunity to get reduced rates by paying for a year or more in advance. Although some Sirius channels are not available in Wi-Fi mode, we still love that the Wi-Fi is there as a backup wireless connection to our tunes. We recommend the Sirius Stiletto 2 most highly.
Daniel Casciato is a full-time freelance writer from Pittsburgh, PA. In addition to writing for Wi-FiPlanet, he writes health, legal, real estate and technology-related articles for trade and consumer magazines and has his own copywriting business. For more information, visit www.danielcasciato.com.