SiriusXM (Originally Sirius Satellite Radio and XM Satellite Radio were competitors, later merged to become SiriusXM).The original concept was satellite based radio, available coast to coast. Listeners wanted to be able to receive the satellite signal at home or in parts of North America where the satellite reception was weak or if you live in the mountains where the direct line of sight satellite signal may be blocked.SOOOO...it DOES require hardware.
That's what I've been saying all along. I did my research.
SiriusXM started limited terrestrial (ground based) rebroadcasting of their satellite signal in some areas. Now it is common for vehicle to have 4G LTE (soon to be 5G) cellular service. SiriusXM introduced a phone app for iPhone and Android phones so you can listen to SiriusXM programming on your phone wherever there is cell service. Newer vehicles supporting Bluetooth (BT) streaming audio enable you to listen to your music library on your phone via BT so why not SiriusXM? No reason not to do this except you burn up your phone's data plan streaming SiriusXM to your phone, then to your vehicle's infotainment system via BT.
It is increasingly common for new vehicles, entry level and mid level models, to not come equipped with built-in SiriusXM radio. Car manufacturers do this to save money. SiriusXM listeners who prefer the features of a dedicated SiriusXM satellite radio receiver including the ability to rewind, play programs at a later time and other advanced features can add a SiriusXM receiver to their vehicles. This does require a small square or round satellite antenna to be mounted outside the vehicle. Power for the SiriusXM receiver can come from the vehicle's 12V accessory outlet or you can hard wire the receiver's power connection to the vehicles fuse panel.
Today's new vehicles increasingly don't come with an auxiliary (AUX) audio input jack so that leave two options for listening to the SiriusXM programming via the vehicle's audio system: FM radio and Bluetooth streaming audio.
FM broadcasting directly from the SiriusXM receiver to the vehicle's FM radio has been around for a quite a while. Since the radio receiver is mounted up front and the FM antenna is usually inside the rear window of the vehicle the very low power FM signal from the SiriusXM receiver may not be strong enough to be picked up by the vehicle's FM radio if the distance is more than a few feet.
To date very few SiriusXM receivers (only the most expensive models) come equipped with built in Bluetooth but there are a few docking stations available for SiriusXM radio receivers that provide BT streaming capability as well as power. With a docking station you can remove the SiriusXM receiver for security and also so you can listen when at home although with the SiriusXM phone app and the ability to listen to SiriusXM programming via the Amazon Echo device or the Alexa phone app (requires a SiriusXM account) the need to remove the SiriusXM receiver from the vehicle and use it in the home is less.
The Tesla Model S and Model X have a built-in SiriusXM receiver and a satellite antenna. The Tesla Model 3 and Model Y do not. To listen to SiriusXM programming in a Model 3 or Model Y today you can install a SiriusXM receiver in the vehicle or stream SiriusXM programming from your phone to the Tesla's infotainment system. The SiriusXM receiver option requires you to install a small satellite antenna outside of the passenger cabin, either on the roof with double sided tape or on the roof rails or hatch or trunk via a magnetic mount. Using your phone to listen to SiriusXM programming requires cell service and uses your phone's data plan.
If, in the future, Tesla decides to support a native SiriusXM app for the Model 3, Model Y you would be able to use the Tesla Premium Connectivity service (currently 4G based) to stream SiriusXM programming to the Tesla vehicle without requiring you to use your phone. This will not require any hardware change to the Tesla vehicle since the SiriusXM app is software and the Tesla already supports streaming for audio services including the Tesla Slacker based music and Spotify Premium.