Tick by tick, Sirius XM Radio (NASDAQ:SIRI) is winning back analysts.

Miller Tabak analyst David Joyce increased his near-term price target for shares of the satellite radio operator from $0.30 a share to $0.50 a share.

Four nickels may not seem like a whole lot of change, but it's a refreshing 67% spike in attitude adjustment. Joyce is also initiating a long-term price target of $1.25 a share on the stock.

But he's not entirely smitten by the company. Joyce is maintaining his firm's neutral rating on Sirius XM. His concerns aren't new. Joyce is worried about the higher debt interest expenses resulting from the Liberty Media (NASDAQ:LINTA) bailout. He is also slashing his expectations for new accounts and revenue growth this year. The analyst now sees 3% in subscriber growth and 2% in top-line growth for the company this year. It's certainly not the heady growth that investors have grown used to, but any growth would be good growth given the sharp declines in new cars by Sirius XM partners like Ford (NYSE:F) and General Motors (NYSE:GM).

The upside is that Sirius XM managed to dramatically shave its operating costs this past quarter, so Joyce is bumping up his operating profit target (even though the company's looming debt interest tallies now find him projecting negative free cash flow for 2009). 

A positive wild card here is next quarter's rollout of a Sirius XM program for Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) App Store. Whether it attracts a new audience or not, it will probably go a long way toward retaining existing subscribers. Giving its product added value will help it battle two of the more troubling trends in last week's quarterly report: an uptick in churn and a dip in conversion rates.

Should Joyce have gone ahead and upgraded his firm's rating on Sirius XM? Probably. Bumping up his targeted price just because Sirius XM shares have inched higher in recent weeks isn't enough. If the stock does hit $0.50 in the near term and $1.25 in the long term, it should easily beat the market. Whatever happened to analysts willing to move aggressively from the pack and show a little conviction behind their price targets?

Still, now that Sirius XM has survived last month's doomsday bankruptcy scenarios, it shouldn't be long before more analysts come back to revisit their assessments of the company. There's always more room on the bandwagon, even for cynical naysayers.

More news than static on Sirius XM:

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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz subscribes to both XM and Sirius. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.