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SEC Filings

CHARTER COMMUNICATIONS, INC. /MO/ filed this Form S-1 on 07/28/1999
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     Under the 1996 Telecom Act, cable operators are not required to obtain
franchises in order to provide telecommunications services, and granting
authorities are prohibited from limiting, restricting or conditioning the
provision of such services. In addition, granting authorities may not require a
cable operator to provide telecommunications services or facilities, other than
institutional networks, as a condition of an initial franchise grant, a
franchise renewal, or a franchise transfer. The 1996 Telecom Act also limits
franchise fees to an operator's cable-related revenues and clarifies that they
do not apply to revenues that a cable operator derives from providing new
telecommunications services.
     We believe our relations with the franchising authorities under which our
systems are operated are generally good. Substantially all of the material
franchises relating to our systems which are eligible for renewal have been
renewed or extended at or prior to their stated expiration dates.
     We face competition in the areas of price, service offerings, and service
reliability. We compete with other providers of television signals and other
sources of home entertainment. In addition, as we expand into additional
services such as Internet access, interactive services and Internet protocol
telephony, we will face competition from other providers of each type of
service. See "Risk Factors -- We operate in a very competitive business
environment which could adversely affect our business and operations".
     To date, we believe that we have not lost a significant number of
customers, or a significant amount of revenue, to our competitors' systems.
However, competition from other providers of the technologies we expect to offer
in the future may have a negative impact on our business in the future.
     Through mergers such as the recent merger of Tele-Communications, Inc. and
AT&T, customers will come to expect a variety of services from a single
provider. While the TCI/AT&T merger has no direct or immediate impact on our
business, it encourages providers of cable and telecommunications services to
expand their service offerings. It also encourages consolidation in the cable
industry as cable operators recognize the competitive benefits of a large
customer base and expanded financial resources.
     Key competitors today include:
     - BROADCAST TELEVISION.  Cable television has long competed with broadcast
television, which consists of television signals that the viewer is able to
receive without charge using a traditional "off-air" antenna. The extent of such
competition is dependent upon the quality and quantity of broadcast signals
available through "off-air" reception compared to the services provided by the
local cable system. The recent licensing of digital spectrum by the Federal
Communications Commission will provide incumbent television licenses with the
ability to deliver high definition television pictures and multiple
digital-quality program streams, as well as advanced digital services such as
subscription video.
     - DBS.  Direct broadcast satellite, known as DBS, has emerged as
significant competition to cable systems. The DBS industry has grown rapidly
over the last several years, far exceeding the growth rate of the cable
television industry, and now serves approximately 10 million subscribers
nationwide. DBS service allows the subscriber to receive video services directly
via satellite using a relatively small dish antenna. Moreover, video compression
technology allows DBS providers to offer more than 100 digital channels, thereby
surpassing the typical cable system. DBS, however, is limited in the local
programming it can provide because of the current capacity limitations of
satellite technology. In addition, existing copyright rules restrict the ability
of DBS providers to offer local broadcast programming. Congress is now
considering legislation that would remove these legal obstacles. After recent
mergers, the two primary DBS providers are DIRECTV and