Timeline of the introduction of television in countries

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A map showing when television was introduced in each country.
  1939 and before
  2000 and after
  No television
  No data

This is a list of when the first publicly announced television broadcasts occurred in the mentioned countries. Non-public field tests and closed circuit demonstrations are not included.

This list should not be interpreted to mean the whole of a country had television service by the specified date. For example, the United States, Great Britain, Germany, and the former Soviet Union all had operational television stations and a limited number of viewers by the year 1939. However, in those countries, only very few cities in each country had television service. Television broadcasts were not yet available in most places.


1920s and 1930s[edit]

Year Countries and territories
1928  United States (Mechanical television, experimental)[1]
1929  United Kingdom (Mechanical, experimental),[2]  Germany (Mechanical, experimental),[3]  Australia (Mechanical, experimental, after hours on two existing Melbourne radio stations),[4][5][6]  Netherlands (Mechnical, experimental; in Scheveningen)[7]
1931  France (Mechanical, experimental),  Canada (Mechanical, Quebec only, experimental),  Soviet Union (Mechanical, experimental), Thailand Siam (Mechanical, experimental, cancelled because of the revolution)
1934  Australia (Electronic television, experimental, Brisbane)[8]
1935  Germany (Intermediate film; semi-electronic),  France (Electronic - PTT Radio Vision),  Netherlands (Electronic, experimental; in Eindhoven by Philips)[7]
1936  United Kingdom (Electronic - BBC Television Service),  Germany (Electronic television - Deutscher Fernseh Rundfunk),  United States (Electronic; experimental and non-commercial until 1941 - NBC)[9]
1937 Free City of Danzig Free City of Danzig (Electronic, experimental),[10]  Poland (Mechanical, experimental)[11]
1938  Soviet Union (Electronic, experimental)  Turkey (Electronic, experimental)
1939  Empire of Japan (Electronic, experimental),[12]  Italy (Electronic, experimental),[13]  Peru (Electronic, experimental),[14]  Poland (Electronic, experimental)[11]


Year Countries and territories
1941  United States ( New York,  Delaware,  New Jersey,  Connecticut) Regular commercial telecasts,  Pennsylvania) .
1942 Nazi Germany Occupied France
1944  France (Returned)
1945  Soviet Union (returned)[15]
1946  United States ( Iowa (experimental),  United Kingdom (Returned),[16]  Philippines (Experimental)
1947  United States ( California,  Washington, D.C.,  Virginia,  Maryland,  Missouri)
1948  Czechoslovakia (Experimental),[17]  Chile (Experimental),  United States ( Ohio,  Washington,  Minnesota,  Texas,  Tennessee),  Canada (Experimental)
1949  United States ( Alabama,  Arizona,  Iowa,  Oklahoma,  North Carolina,  Florida)


Year Countries and territories
1950  United States ( Iowa (Des Moines),  Tennessee (Nashville)),  Cuba,  Brazil,   Switzerland,  West Germany (experimental),  Mexico (Experimental),[18]  Japan (Returned, electronic, experimental)
1951  Argentina,  Denmark,[19]  Netherlands[7]
1952  Canada,  United States ( Spokane,  Colorado),  Chile (Sporadically until 1956),  Dominican Republic,  West Germany (full service),  East Germany (experimental),  Poland (Returned),  Thailand (Experimental),  Hawaii,  United Kingdom ( Scotland),  Venezuela
1953  Japan (Returned),  Canada ( Ottawa, British Columbia),  United States ( Arkansas,  California (Fresno),  Las Vegas)  Belgium,[20]  Czechoslovakia,  Philippines (thru ABS, now ABS-CBN),  Alaska,  United Kingdom ( Northern Ireland)
1954  Colombia,  United States ( New Hampshire, Vermont, Wyoming),  Canada ( Alberta,  Manitoba),  Australia (experimental),  Italy,  Latvian SSR,  Morocco,  Puerto Rico,  Monaco,  Norway (experimental)
1955  Mexico (Returned),  Estonian SSR,  Guatemala,  Guernsey,  Jersey,  Luxembourg, Romania Rumania (experimental),  Thailand (Official)
1956  Australia, France French Algeria,[21]  Armenian SSR,  Austria,  Azerbaijan SSR,  Byelorussian SSR,  Cyprus,  East Germany (full service),  Guam,  Georgian SSR,  Iraq,  Nicaragua, Romania Rumania,  South Korea,  Spain,  Philippines,  Panama,  Portugal (experimental),  Sweden,  Ukrainian SSR (regular programming),  Uruguay,  Uzbek SSR, Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Yugoslavia[22]
1957  Chile (full service),  Finland (test programming),  Hong Kong,[23]  Hungary, Flag of Kuwait 1940-1961.png Kuwait,  Lithuanian SSR,[24]  Portugal (full service)
1958  Bermuda,  China,  Finland (regular programming), Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic Kazakh SSR, Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic Moldavian SSR,  El Salvador,  Iran,  Peru,  United Kingdom ( Wales)[25]
1959  Bulgaria,  Ecuador,  Haiti,  Honduras,  India, Kirghiz Soviet Socialist Republic Kirghiz SSR (regular programming),  Lebanon,  Nigeria, United States Ryukyu Islands,[26]  Tajik SSR, Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic Turkmen SSR


Year Countries and territories
1960  Albania,  Costa Rica,  Netherlands Antilles,  New Zealand,  Norway (full service),  Southern Rhodesia,  United Arab Republic[27]
1961  Ireland,[28]  Northern Rhodesia,  U.S. Virgin Islands
1962  Ivory Coast,  Republic of the Congo,  Kenya,  Malta,[29]  Indonesia,  Sierra Leone,  Republic of China,[30]  Trinidad and Tobago,  Gibraltar,[31]  Sudan
1963  Bolivia,  North Korea, France French Polynesia,  Gabon,  Malaysia,  Singapore,  Jamaica,  Uganda,  Upper Volta
1964  Afghanistan,  American Samoa,  Barbados, Pakistan East Pakistan,  Ethiopia France Guadeloupe,  Liberia, France Martinique, United Kingdom Mauritius,  North Yemen, Pakistan West Pakistan,  Réunion,  Saudi Arabia
1965  Dutch Guiana (trial and regular programming),  Ghana,  New Caledonia,  Paraguay,  Senegal
1966  Cambodia,  Congo-Kinshasa,  Greece,  Tunisia,  Iceland,  Israel,[32] South Vietnam South Vietnam
1967  Djibouti, France French Guiana,  Mongolia,  Saint Pierre and Miquelon,  Canada  Northwest Territories,  Madagascar,  Saint Lucia
1968  Turkey,  Jordan,  Equatorial Guinea,  Libya,  Canada  Yukon,  Canada  Nunavut
1969  Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands,  Abu Dhabi (now part of United Arab Emirates)


Year Countries and territories
1970  Qatar, North Vietnam North Vietnam
1972  Saint Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla
1973  Bahrain,  Niger,  Tanzania,  Togo,  British Virgin Islands
1974  Central African Republic,  Grenada,  Oman
1975  Angola,  Dominica,  Brunei, Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Kosovo (RTV Priština),  Tuvalu (foreign-owned launching),  South Yemen, France Wallis and Futuna Islands
1976  South Africa
1977  Bahamas,[33]  Guinea, Indonesia East Timor
1978  Benin,  Lesotho,  Maldives,  Swaziland
1979  Burma,[34]  Sri Lanka


Year Countries and territories
1980  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
1981  Belize, Portugal Macau,  Mozambique, South Africa South West Africa
1982  Greenland,[35]  Mauritania[36]
1983  Andorra,  Antigua and Barbuda,  Cambodia (as Kampuchea; re-established),  Cameroon,  Mali,    Nepal,  Seychelles,  Somalia,[37]   Vatican City,[38]  Laos[39]
1984  Burundi,  Cape Verde,  Chad,  Comoros,  Faroe Islands
1986  Mayotte,  Niue
1987  Papua New Guinea (foreign-owned launching)
1989  Cook Islands,  Guinea-Bissau,[40][41]  San Marino,  Western Samoa

1990s and 2000s[edit]

Year Countries and territories
1991  Cayman Islands,  Falkland Islands,[42]  Fiji[43]  Guyana,  Nauru,  Rwanda  São Tomé and Príncipe
1992  Botswana,  Solomon Islands, Vanuatu
1993  Eritrea,  Czech Republic,  Slovakia[44]
1995  Gambia,  Kiribati,  Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha,  Turks and Caicos Islands
1996  Malawi,  Palau
1998  Bhutan[45],  Uzbekistan[46]
2000  Tonga
2002  Kiribati (native, but suspended from 2013 to 2018),  Western Sahara[47]
2006  Åland[48]
2008  Liechtenstein,  Papua New Guinea (state-owned launching)

Countries without television[edit]

As of July 2019, the only such country is Tuvalu has no native service.

See also[edit]

Notes and citations[edit]

  1. ^ See WRGB History, How Television Came to Boston: The Forgotten Story of W1XAY, W3XK: America's first television station, and "WRNY to Start Daily Television Broadcasts," The New York Times, August 13, 1928, p. 13.
  2. ^ See J.L. Baird: Television in 1932.
  3. ^ See Museum of Broadcast Communications: Germany and Berlin 1936: Television in Germany.
  4. ^ Australian TV – The First 25 Years by Peter Bielby, page 173. ISBN 0-17-005998-7
  5. ^ Linking a Nation – Chap 9 – Australian Heritage Council
  6. ^ Peter Luck, 50 Years of Australian Television ISBN 1-74110-367-3 p.15
  7. ^ a b c See Eerste NTS journaal op de Nederlandse televisie.
  8. ^ "Birth of Our Nation". Brisbane Courier Mail. Archived from the original on February 15, 2008.
  9. ^ See The Birth of Live Entertainment and Music on Television, November 6, 1936, and 1937 RCA Publicity Photographs. "Eighty-seven video programs were telecast by NBC last year," "Where Is Television Now? Archived 2008-09-13 at the Wayback Machine", Popular Mechanics, August 1938, p. 178. Regularly scheduled electronic broadcasts began in April 1938 in New York (to the second week of June, and resuming in August) and Los Angeles. "Telecasts Here and Abroad," The New York Times, April 24, 1938, Drama-Screen-Radio section, p. 10; "Early Birds," Time, June 13, 1938; "Telecasts to Be Resumed," The New York Times, Aug. 21, 1938, Drama-Screen-Radio section, p. 10; Robert L. Pickering, "Eight Years of Television in California," California — Magazine of the Pacific, June 1939. Also note that many rural areas of the Southern United States didn't receive television until the late 1950s and early 1960s.
  10. ^ Although 180-line cathode ray tube receivers were manufactured in France in 1936, a mechanical scanning camera was still used at the transmitter in Paris until 1937.
  11. ^ a b See The Warsaw Voice: What's On? and Historia Przemysłowego Instytutu Telekomunikacji przed II wojną światową at the Wayback Machine (archived September 28, 2007) (in Polish).
  12. ^ See The Evolution of TV: A Brief History of TV Technology in Japan: “Can you see me clearly?” Archived 2013-01-01 at the Wayback Machine; Public TV Image Experiments Archived 2016-05-26 at the Wayback Machine.
  13. ^ See Early Television in Italy
  14. ^ See Historia de la televisión en el Perú
  15. ^ Off from 1939 to 1945 for the Second World War.
  16. ^ Off from 1939 to 1946 for the Second World War.
  17. ^ See [1]; Czechoslovakia became two separate states, namely the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 1993.
  18. ^ ["Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-09-21. Retrieved 2013-10-24.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Latin America's first experimental television station (in Spanish)
  19. ^ See History of DR.
  20. ^ Dutch-language BRT used the Belgian 625-line standard and French-language RTB used the Belgian 819-line standard (abandoned in 1963). Early Belgian sets were very expensive because they could receive 4 different standards: Belgian 625, European 625, Belgian 819, French 819. Later a 5th standard was added with the French 625-line standard.
  21. ^ Cheurfi, Achour (September 2010). Radio et télévision : histoire d'un monopole. La presse algérienne : génèse, conflits et défis (in French). Algiers: Casbah Éditions. p. 88–p. 148.
  22. ^ The date refers to the launch of the television channel in republics and autonomuous provinces of Yugoslavia. There were RTV Zagreb, in Croatia (1956), RTV Ljubljana in Slovenia (1958), RTV Belgrade in Serbia (1958), RTV Skopje in Macedonia (1964), RTV Sarajevo in Bosnia and Herzegovina (1969), and RTV Titograd (Podgorica) in Montenegro (1971). In Kosovo (RTV Priština) and Vojvodina (RTV Novi Sad), it was introduced in 1975.
  23. ^ Television was introduced in Hong Kong when it was a British crown colony until 1997.
  24. ^ http://www.lrt.lt/en/about/history
  25. ^ Wales had received broadcasts from England since 1952.
  26. ^ Television was introduced in the Ryukyu Islands (now part of Japan) when they were under U.S. administration,
  27. ^ The United Arab Republic was a short-lived political union between  Egypt and  Syria. The union began in 1958 and existed until 1961, when Syria seceded from the union.
  28. ^ Ireland had received broadcasts from the United Kingdom since 1949.
  29. ^ Previously received television broadcasts from Italy.
  30. ^ This is the year when television was introduced in territories under its administration. After the Chinese Civil War, the government of the Republic of China retreated to Taiwan and other islands, and Mainland China was controlled by the People's Republic of China.
  31. ^ Gibraltar had previously received television broadcasts from Spain.
  32. ^ The Israeli Ministry of Education in cooperation with the Rothschild Fund started limited broadcasts to schools in March 1966. A public state-owned TV channel started broadcasting in May 1968. Broadcasts were black and white (with a few exceptions) until the early 1980s.
  33. ^ The Bahamas had previously received broadcasts from the United States.
  34. ^ Test service available only in Yangon in 1979, and formally launched in 1981. See "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-12-03. Retrieved 2009-01-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link).
  35. ^ http://knr.gl/en
  36. ^ عن المؤسسة - موقع التلفزة الموريتانية. tvm.mr (in Arabic). Retrieved 2018-10-25.
  37. ^ Louise M. Bourgault (22 June 1995). Mass Media in Sub-Saharan Africa. Indiana University Press. pp. 104–. ISBN 0-253-11309-1.
  38. ^ Although the Vatican did not have a television service of its own until 1983, broadcasts from Italy had been received since 1954.
  39. ^ Television available from Nong Khai city in Thailand since the mid-1970s
  40. ^ "Guiné-Bissau: Televisão celebra 17º aniversário com 14 horas de emissão". Agência Angola Press. 15 November 2006. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  41. ^ LUSA (Agência de Notícias de Portugal, S.A.) (14 November 2007). "Único canal de televisão da Guiné-Bissau comemora 18 anos". Rádio e Televisão de Portugal. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  42. ^ Television broadcasts had also been received from Argentina.
  43. ^ Television came to Fiji in part-time for the 1991 Rugby World Cup, and it arrived in full-time in 1994.
  44. ^ The Czech Republic and Slovakia inherited Czechoslovakia's common service upon its dissolution.
  45. ^ "Bhutan TV Follows Cyber Launch". BBC News. 2 June 1999.
  46. ^ "Television history of Uzbekistan". MTRK. 26 March 1998.
  47. ^ "Sahrawis launch national television". Afrol News. 2009-05-21. Retrieved 2012-06-03.
  48. ^ http://www.radiotv.ax/om-alands-radio (Swedish).

External links[edit]