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  • History of Satellite TV 

    Satellite use dates back to the 20th century when they were first employed to explore military options. It wasn’t until later that it became clear that satellites might be useful for entertainment as well. This discovery prompted the beginning of what is known as Satellite TV in 1962.

    More than 100 million people watched the first international satellite TV broadcast in 1962. This broadcast was shown not only across America, but also in Canada and across Europe. This historic event was narrated by Walter Cronkite himself and featured a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty, a brief portion of a baseball game, and a speech by then President John F. Kennedy. Following this, the program showed scenes from around the continent, which many had never had the chance to see before.

    A few years passed before any big progress was made following the first launch in 1962. Technologists and engineers continued working to build a national network of satellite TV. The first national network of television was not created in America where you might think, but rather in the Soviet Union in 1967. These early satellite networks were based on analog signals.  The digital receivers we use today can not even transmit an analog signal because of the low quality. 


    Satellite TV comes to North America

    Interestingly enough; Canada beat the United States to the punch regarding satellite TV initially. Obviously over time the U.S. has caught up and then some, but it’s interesting to see how long it took to develop a viable option. The first Canadian satellite used for TV broadcasts was called Anik 1 and wasn’t used until 1972, almost 5 years later than the original Soviet network launch.

    Satellite TV as We Now Know It

    Do you remember seeing the giant satellite dishes in yards that used to be required for satellite TV?  Not only were these enormous in size and would take up half of your back yard, but they had very poor signals that would often go out at the slightest hints of bad weather. Fortunately, over time the technology has grown and matured to levels that surpass what can be offered with cable TV.

    One of the biggest reasons Satellite TV is so effective is that just one satellite can often send a broadcast to multiple countries, or at least a large part of one. So even though building and launching a satellite into space is a huge expense it is mitigated through service volume. Not only that, but satellite installation is much simpler than cable. Satellite TV installation can be completed with just a small receiver needed somewhere on the roof pointed in the right direction. Using digital receivers, which transmit the signal to the tuner inside your house allows for the delivery of hundreds of high definition channels without interruption. In closing, satellite TV has come a long way from the glitchy beginnings to the robust high quality service offered today, and who knows what the future will hold.