Cable TV, internet provider Spectrum expands into news

Nov. 17—Hawaii’s largest cable TV and internet service provider has gotten into the local news production business.

Spectrum today is publicly introducing a website and app featuring news stories from Hawaii, the nation and world.

The Spectrum News product, available to the company’s cable and internet customers, includes stories from a handful of its own journalists based in Hawaii as well as from partners that include the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, West Hawaii Today, Hawaii Tribune-Herald, The Garden Island, Pacific Business News and The Associated Press.

Hawaii is only the second U.S. market where Spectrum has launched an online-only news product via a mobile phone app, following Maine in August.

Spectrum has had its own TV news stations in some mainland cities, expanding from one in New York nearly three decades ago to 30 stations today in nine states where apps delivering online news productions were added last year.

Katie Lombardi, vice president of digital operations for Spectrum Networks, said the company doesn’t plan a TV news offering in Hawaii because it is focused on delivering news where its customers can receive it most conveniently.

“We are really excited to bring our brand of local journalism and storytelling to another state, ” she said.

Spectrum entered the Hawaii market with cable and internet service in 2016 when Connecticut-based parent company Charter Communications Inc. bought the owner of what had long been Oceanic Cable, Time Warner Cable.

Spectrum has hired two producers and a reporter for its Spectrum News product in Hawaii, which had a soft launch recently. The company is in the process of hiring three more journalists to fill out its local staff.

A podcast featuring interviews with government leaders, “The People’s People : Hawaii, ” also is planned for the site starting in December.

Correction : An earlier version of this story mistakenly described online news as being a recent addition in some mainland Spectrum markets. The mobile app was the addition.

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