Timeline of the introduction of television in countries

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 film, television or video-related list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it with reliably sourced additions.
A map showing when television was introduced in each country.
  1939 and before
  2000 and after
  No television
  No data

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

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 (mechanical, experimental in Scheveningen)[7]
1931 France (mechanical, experimental), Canada Québec (mechanical only, experimental),  Soviet Union (mechanical, experimental), 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), [9]
1937 Free City of Danzig (electronic, experimental),[10] Poland (mechanical, experimental)[11]
1938 Soviet Union (electronic, experimental), Turkey (electronic, experimental)
1939 Chile (experimental), Japan (electronic, experimental),[12] Italy (electronic, experimental),[13] Peru (electronic, experimental),[14] Poland (electronic, experimental)[11] United States (electronic; experimental and non-commercial until 1941 - NBC)


Year Countries and territories
1941 United States ( New York, Delaware, New Jersey, Connecticut, regular commercial telecasts, Pennsylvania)
1942 Occupied France
1944 France (returned)
1945 Soviet Union (returned)[15]
1946 United States ( Iowa, experimental),  United Kingdom (returned),[16] Philippines (experimental), Mexico (experimental)[17]
1947 United States ( California, Washington, D.C., Virginia, Maryland, Missouri)
1948 Czechoslovakia (experimental),[18] United States ( Ohio, Washington, Minnesota, Texas, Tennessee), Canada (experimental)  Brazil (experimental)
1949 United States ( Alabama, Arizona, Iowa, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Florida),  Italy (experimental)


Year Countries and territories
1950 United States ( Des Moines, Nashville), Cuba, Brazil, Switzerland, West Germany (experimental), Mexico (official),  Japan (returned, electronic, experimental)
1951 Argentina, Denmark,[19] Netherlands[7]
1952 Canada, United States ( Spokane, Colorado), Chile (sporadically until 1959), 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, Fresno, Nevada, North Dakota) 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 (official), Latvian SSR, Morocco, Puerto Rico, Monaco, Norway (experimental), Saudi Arabia (experimental)
1955 Estonian SSR, Guatemala,  United Kingdom ( Guernsey, Jersey), Luxembourg, Romania (experimental), Thailand (official)
1956 Australia, French Algeria,[21] Armenian SSR, Austria, Azerbaijan SSR, Byelorussian SSR, Cyprus, East Germany (full service), Guam, Georgian SSR, Iraq, Nicaragua, Romania, South Korea, Spain, Philippines, Panama,[22] Portugal (experimental), Sweden, Ukrainian SSR (regular programming), Uruguay, Uzbek SSR, Yugoslavia[23]
1957 Finland (test programming), Hong Kong,[24] Hungary, Kuwait, Lithuanian SSR,[25] Lebanon, Portugal (full service),  United Kingdom ( Wales)[26]
1958 Bermuda, China, Finland (regular programming), Kazakh SSR, Moldavian SSR, El Salvador, Iran, Peru
1959 Bulgaria, Chile (full service), Ecuador, Haiti, Honduras, India, Kirghiz SSR (regular programming), Nigeria, Ryukyu Islands,[27] Tajik SSR, Turkmen SSR


Year Countries and territories
1960 Albania, Costa Rica, Netherlands Antilles, New Zealand, Norway (full service), Southern Rhodesia, United Arab Republic[28]
1961 Ireland,[29] Northern Rhodesia, U.S. Virgin Islands
1962 Ivory Coast, Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Malta,[30] Indonesia, Sierra Leone, Republic of China,[31] Trinidad and Tobago, Gibraltar,[32] Sudan
1963 Bolivia, North Korea, French Polynesia, Gabon, Malaysia, Singapore, Jamaica, Uganda, Upper Volta
1964 American Samoa, Barbados, East Pakistan, Ethiopia, Guadeloupe, Liberia, Martinique, Mauritius, North Yemen, West Pakistan, Réunion, Saudi Arabia
1965 Suriname (trial and regular programming), Ghana, New Caledonia, Paraguay, Senegal
1966 Zambia, Cambodia, Congo-Kinshasa, Greece, Tunisia, Iceland, Israel,[33] South Vietnam
1967 French Somaliland, French Guiana, Mongolia, Saint Pierre and Miquelon,  Canada ( Northwest Territories), Madagascar, Saint Lucia
1968 Turkey, Jordan, Equatorial Guinea, Libya,  Canada ( Yukon)
1969 Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, Abu Dhabi (now part of United Arab Emirates)


Year Countries and territories
1970 Qatar, 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, Kosovo (RTV Priština), Tuvalu (foreign-owned launching), South Yemen, Wallis and Futuna Islands
1976 South Africa
1977 Bahamas,[34] Guinea, East Timor
1978 Afghanistan, Benin, Lesotho, Maldives, Swaziland
1979 Burma,[35] Sri Lanka


Year Countries and territories
1980 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
1981 Belize, Macau, Mozambique, South West Africa
1982 Greenland, 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


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
1995 Gambia, Kiribati, Saint Helena, Turks and Caicos Islands
1996 Malawi, Palau
1999 Bhutan[44]

2000s and 2010s

Year Countries and territories
2000 Tonga
2002 Kiribati (native, but suspended from 2013 to 2018), Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic[45]
2006 Åland[46]
2008 Liechtenstein, Papua New Guinea (state-owned launching)
2016 Norfolk Island
2018 Kiribati (returned)

Countries without television

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

See also

Notes and citations

  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. See Eerste NTS journaal op de Nederlandse televisie.
  8. "Timeline – national and state, 1927-1941". 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. 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 during World War II.
  16. Off from 1939 to 1946 during World War II.
  17. ["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)
  18. Czechoslovakia became two separate states, namely the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 1993.
  19. See DRs historie 1950-1959.
  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 four different standards: Belgian 625, European 625, Belgian 819, French 819. Later a fifth 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. https://www.laestrella.com.pa/amp/nacional/180314/chica-panama-llegada-pantalla
  23. The date refers to the launch of the television channel in republics and autonomous 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), RTV Titograd (Podgorica) in Montenegro (1971), and in Kosovo (RTV Priština) and Vojvodina (RTV Novi Sad) was introduced in 1975.
  24. Television was introduced in Hong Kong when it was a British crown colony until 1997.
  25. About LRT
  26. Wales had received broadcasts from England since 1952.
  27. Television was introduced in the Ryukyu Islands (now part of Japan) when they were under U.S. administration.
  28. 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.
  29. Ireland had received broadcasts from the United Kingdom since 1949.
  30. Previously received television broadcasts from Italy.
  31. 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 retreat to Taiwan and other islands, and Mainland China was controlled by the People's Republic of China.
  32. Gibraltar had previously received television broadcasts from Spain.
  33. The Israeli Ministry of Education in co-operation 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.
  34. The Bahamas had previously received broadcasts from the United States.
  35. Test service available only in Yangon in 1979, and formally launched in 1981.
  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 is 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. "Bhutan TV Follows Cyber Launch". BBC News. 2 June 1999.
  45. "Sahrawis launch national television". Afrol News. 2009-05-21. Retrieved 2012-06-03.
  46. http://www.radiotv.ax/om-alands-radio (Swedish).