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Ali Mau, who will present Seven Sharp with comedian Jesse Mulligan and former newsreader Greg Boyed, said the public had been "misled a little bit, not by us by commentators, who ... really know nothing about the programme".
Speaking to Newstalk ZB, the former Fair Go presenter said the show would feature interviews, live commentators and hard-hitting stories.
"[People] have been misled into believing the programme won't have any harder stories, and that's not true at all."
Mau also revealed the show would use new software allowing viewers to interact directly with the hosts.
"The three hosts will have screens that we'll be able to select real-time comments from and debate with the viewers and bring their viewpoint directly into the programme," she said.
"You can't leave the viewers behind and expect them to sit politely on the couch and swallow everything you say, you have to give them a chance to respond."
The show, which replaces Close Up, starts on Monday. Mau said she was very excited about it, but also quite nervous.
"[I'm] quite confident that it'll be a hit."