Charter Debuts HDTV in Five Markets

Charter Communications Inc. has launched its Charter High Definition Service in five markets to provide customers with HDTV programming over their local cable systems.

The five markets are Alhambra/Pasadena and Glendale/Burbank, Calif.; University Park/Highland Park, Texas; Miami Beach, Fla.; and Birmingham, Ala. Customers who subscribe to the service will be able to receive dedicated HDTV programming from HBO and Showtime, and will receive network affiliates' HDTV content soon.

Subscribers in the five markets will pay a monthly fee for use of a Scientific-Atlanta Explorer 3100HD digital settop box.

Charter also plans to begin HDTV services in Kalamazoo, Mich. and St. Louis in the third quarter. Those markets will use the Motorola DCT-5100.