History of Television: Explained


By Arindam Roy

History of television is something that a lot of people don’t know much about. What it does is research everything from how the first television networks were created, all the way down to how shows are created today. It’s also an encyclopedia of science fiction and fantasy, including shows that didn’t make it to air but had such revolutionary stories behind them that they changed the way that people thought about storytelling forever.

In the history of television, there are many milestones that have been reached, creating one of the most wide-spread popular cultures in the world. Not only have we seen television change the way we live, but we have also seen it pioneer a new industry, taking ideas from film and literature and bringing them into living rooms around the world. Television doesn’t always get the credit it deserves. Many people think of film and literature as the origins of television, but television is older than these two mediums.

The history of television is rich with innovation and creativity. The arrival of television, coupled with the invention of sound recording technology, paved the way for a new era in broadcasting. Thus began the Golden Age of Television and begat an explosion in creativity within its medium.

The history of TV goes back to one man, John Logie Baird who had a vision for how it could be. He developed his first working TV system in 1926 and it was called the “Baird Televisor.” This particular invention allowed him to transmit live pictures that people could view in their homes on Sundays without expensive electronics equipment such as cameras or lenses by simply using a specially made tube that shone light onto photographic paper inside the receiver.

The technology used was from his previous inventions such as the “televisor kinescope” and the “radio kinematograph” which were both imagers. Both of these devices were able to create an image by using a spinning disk that was covered with holes known as “pixels.” They changed the holes from opaque to transparent by using an electromagnetic signal for each pixel.

John Logie Baird began work on television in February 20, 1925 and it was also around this time that he had decided to set up a demonstration at Selfridges Department Store in London, England where he showed his first TV pictures from his laboratory located in Soho Square (see figure 1). (See also: John Logie Baird.)

Also read: Best TV Brands: Detailed Reviews

In 1926, Baird was able to transmit a live image of the coronation of King George V through the BBC in London. Initially, he was not successful with his BBC transmissions because of how poor the signal quality was on that day at 4:00PM. He discovered that the light on the receiving system was uneven and this disturbed the picture.

To address this issue, he had to tune out all of the noise in his studio by rendering each pixel blind if it wasn’t active. He believed that this would allow him to get a better picture.

In 1927, Baird was able to transmit an image from the Epsom Derby horse running track which lasted for 9 1/2 seconds. He received special permission to broadcast through the BBC after having written a letter of protest against the banning of cinema broadcasts in 1926.

With this permission, he was able to produce his first commercial television station with Wallace McCurn and his company, the Associated Television Company (ATV) in London. His first test broadcast was on November 2, 1929 and it only lasted for 10 minutes due to technical difficulties.

He had just finished recording a test broadcast and then suddenly the sound went out as well. He was able to fix this issue within 5 minutes. Afterwards, he was still optimistic about his station and claims that he had the ability to show the image of a London street corner changing from day to night.

Also read: Best 43-inch Smart TV in India in 2021- Expert’s Choice

In 1930, Baird’s live broadcast of the Epsom Derby that lasted for 9 1/2 seconds started a controversy regarding whether or not such images were allowed under British law.

At the time, no one knew what constituted a “broadcast” in Great Britain yet because there were still laws restricting all forms of entertainment broadcasts on the radio and television systems at that time. For example, no one had ever heard of television shows or films on television until Baird’s broadcast which caused an uproar in Parliament.

Read more: Best 32 Inch Smart LED TV – Reviews 2021

A Brief Timeline of Television History

1924– experimental TV broadcasts in Western Europe (UK)

1925 – first American public demonstration of TV at Prince Theater in New York City

1928 – John Logie Baird creates an all-electronic receiver to make use not only visible light but also microwave wavelengths (TV).

1928 – Kellogg Company creates the Nipkow disk (first image pickup device for TV)

1929 – a Canadian named A. A. Campbell-Swinton introduces the “superheterodyne” circuit in London

1930s – American inventor Philo Farnsworth, with the help of his financial backer Charles L. Grant, develops a system which is sometimes called “television” or “image dissector.

1930 – the first long-distance television is broadcast between London and Glasgow

1931 – major commercial TV station opens in New York City (WNBT)

Related article: Best 65 Inch Smart TV in India – Buying Guide 2021

1932 – the BBC begins regular TV broadcasting using Baird’s system of two-dimensional, large-screen television

October 23, 1935 – NBC initiates their first regularly scheduled TV programming consisting of a variety show called “The Celebrity Hour”, news broadcasts, and the musical offerings of organist Jimmy McPartland. The series was brief and marked as experimental.

November 2, 1936 – Queen Elizabeth II unveils an early version of a wireless television receiver at Royal Albert Hall in London, England.

April 5, 1939 – the first television broadcast to a nationwide audience in the United States. “The Bell Telephone Hour” featuring Laura Z. Hobson was a big hit in 1938 and 1939 with over 150 American cities being able to view the show.

1939 – the Germans begin broadcasting television using a 35mm film camera with sound tracks, which is then re-processed as video tape. It is also called Videofunk, which means video telegraphy.

1940s – experimental TV broadcasts from both sides of World War II

1950s – color TV broadcasts begin in the US, and went worldwide by 1960 after some dramatic British restrictions were lifted

Read here: Best Smart TV Under 25000 Rupees in India – Top Picks

Benefits of television

o matter what anyone says, TV has plenty of benefits. It can be a great way to relax after a long day, distract from pain when you’re injured, and even improve your vocabulary. It’s also been shown to improve children’s grades and overall attitude in school – as long as they watch educational programs! TVs have done a lot for us over the years, and we should never forget that.

TV is one of life’s daily pleasures that we tend not to think enough about – until there’s an argument about whether it is bad or good for us. It can be a great way to relax after a long day. Distracts from pain when you’re injured. Improves your vocabulary. It’s also been shown to improve children’s grades and overall attitude in school – as long as they watch educational programs! Saves lives by providing emergency information.

Can be used for self-diagnosis or when consulting a doctor. Has been used to train pilots, soldiers and astronauts, and to keep them informed while at sea or in the air. Gives us entertainment on a lonely night. Helps children develop language and better social skills. Can be used by the elderly to keep up with things. Helps ease stress and anxiety, and makes you feel better.

Helps children develop language and better social skills. Can be used by the elderly to keep up with things. Helps ease stress and anxiety, and makes you feel better. It teaches self-discipline, how to deal with stress or make difficult decisions, or to control impulses like eating or drinking too much alcohol.

Also read: Best Smart TV under 30000 in India – A Quick Guide

For some people, it helps control how much they eat or drink so they’re not tempted by food during shows they know they can’t have afterward (couch potato). Can be used to communicate with other people, like family members who live far away. Can be used to teach children about the world in which they live.

Eases boredom, loneliness or depression. Helps you meet people with similar interests and hobbies. Manages fear of the unknown by helping you get information about things that scare you. Can teach you about how other people live or what makes them happy or sad. Teaches entrepreneurship through shows like Dragon’s Den, Shark Tank and The Apprentice (apprenticeship). Gives you something to talk about with friends and family when there isn’t much else going on (conversation).

Helps you learn about different cultures and the struggles faced by others in other countries. Provides a social outlet on a lonely night or at work, when there isn’t enough time for you to do healthy things like exercise, play with your kids, or go out to lunch with friends (social).

Teaches entrepreneurship through shows like Dragon’s Den, Shark Tank and The Apprentice (apprenticeship). Gives you something to talk about with friends and family when there isn’t much else going on (conversation).

Helps you learn about different cultures and the struggles faced by others in other countries. Provides a social outlet on a lonely night or at work, when there isn’t enough time for you to do healthy things like exercise, play with your kids, or go out to lunch with friends (social).

Read more: What are the types of TV? Pros and Cons of different TVs

It gives you something to do when you have nothing else to do (time filler). When done appropriately, is a good way to get away from the real world and into an imaginary world that relieves stress (escape). Helps you find solutions by keeping your mind busy so it doesn’t zero in on the problem and make it worse.

It helps teach quality values such as honesty and integrity. It can be used for self-diagnosis or when consulting a doctor (medical knowledge). Can be used to teach you about the world in which you live (world-view). Helps to reduce anxiety and stress. It makes your eyes continuously follow TV screens, giving you a break from staring at a computer screen all day or doing nothing at all (eye-strain).

Helps with pain and reduces symptoms of depression. Is often used by the elderly to keep up with things (retirement). Helps ease stress and anxiety, and makes you feel better. Can educate the public about important issues such as war, economics, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, disease outbreaks and other matters of importance that they need to be aware of (education).

Helps us figure out how to live by helping us discover what’s important and how we want to live our lives (life-skills). It can show you new ways of doing things, and help guide your future plans.

Related article: What should I know before buying a TV? Tips for Buying a TV

It helps keep children entertained by teaching them much more than just academics (education). Helps you meet people with similar interests and hobbies. It’s a way to get criminals off the street and provide justice by showing the consequences of crime through television (apprehending).

Can be used as a life-saver when staying safe from other dangers on or near the water (safety information). Can help you learn about yourself, your strengths and weaknesses, so you can make better choices in life.

Teaches entrepreneurship through shows like Dragon’s Den, Shark Tank and The Apprentice (apprenticeship). Helps you get useful information about the world around you: economic conditions, politics, weather, natural disasters and medical issues.

Can reduce fears of the unknown by helping you get information about things that scare you. It can teach us how to live by helping us discover what’s important and how we want to live our lives (life-skills). Helps you figure out how to live by helping us discover what’s important and how we want to live our lives (life-skills).

Go To Home Page

About The Author

Reply