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Only the XM signal is digital, OnStar uses an Analog signal. The link below is from GM’s Technology Preview Displays, and shows that GM is working on getting OnStar and XM’s antenna merged into one unit. Also it must be said that, black vehicles have a tendency to reduce signal strength, therefore, a body integrated antenna’s performance would be subject to the body color, which would be unacceptable, and would result in mass complaining. Also an analog system’s performance is also dependant on a line of sight based theory. As a result, a small antenna, adds a sporty feeling to the vehicle when placed in the right location and shaped effectively and you get the best reception. My guess as to why GM is installing the antennas on the front of the car is probably due to the fact that the majority of the vehicles that have them mounted there are offered with spoiler style sunroofs which would cover the antenna, and reduce signal strength when the sunroof was open.

Gm: Integrating Advanced Audio Technology
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