Full Channel Celebrates 30 Years
The company remains the only family-owned TV, phone and Internet provider in the state.
Independent television and phone providers are largely a thing of the past — except in Warren, that is.
Full Channel, a local, family-owned TV, Internet and phone company, is celebrating its 30th year in business. To-date, it remains the only independent provider in Rhode Island.
“My father was a real visionary,” said Linda Jane Maaia, president and CEO of Full Channel. “He started out repairing television sets as a hobby; he then became interested in what he thought would be the future of television.”
In 1965, a time when most Americans were watching one of three TV stations, company founder John Donofrio was dreaming about beaming satellite television signals around the world and into our living rooms. Donofrio founded Full-Channel TV, Inc. (now Full Channel, Inc.) that year and spent the next two decades lobbying for one of the highly coveted cable television franchises in New England. By 1982, the Rhode Island Division of Public Utilities and Carriers had awarded Donofrio’s company the right to build a system in Bristol County. His was the only family-owned company among the group of regional and national organizations vying for franchises.
In mid-1982, Full Channel was among the very few cable providers to choose addressable set-top boxes in order to offer premium services with the press of a button. In 2003, the company was the first in the state to offer second generation speed cable modem services.
Donofrio remained at the helm until his death in 2004, at which time his daughter Linda Jane Maaia and his grandson Levi C. Maaia stepped in. Since then, the company has continued its focus on local, community-based support airing live town government meetings, supporting local youth sports and the arts.
In 2011, Full Channel stepped in to air the Bristol Fourth of July Parade.
“When the parade committee requested our help, we happily offered our technical resources to keep the tradition alive,” explained company vice president, Levi C. Maaia. “We were able not only to get the parade on TV here in town, but also stream it live so viewers around the world could see the nation’s oldest celebration for the first time.”
As Rhode Island’s only local, family-owned broadband provider, Full Channel is a full-service communications provider to Rhode Island’s East Bay, delivering TV, Internet and digital phone services to Barrington, Warren and Bristol.