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TeleCommunications Inc. said Tuesday its losses nearly doubled in the first quarter, reflecting recent expenditures on new and upgraded cable systems.

For the quarter that ended March 31, TCI lost $86 million, or 17 cents a share, on revenues of $1.4 billion, compared with a loss of $45 million, or 8 cents a share, on revenues of $1.2 billion, a year ago.The results were "absolutely no surprise," said John Reidy, a telecommunications analyst for Smith Barney in New York. "It is very much what has been presented in several forums by the company."

TCI said during the first quarter it added 343,000 basic cable customers, mostly through acquisitions, including its purchase of Chronicle cable properties. It also added 137,000 basic cable customers through internal growth, the company said.