The Evolution of TV

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Regular Radio Broadcasting Begins

1920   World’s first radio broadcaster (KDKA in the U.S.) begins broadcasting
1922 British Broadcasting Company (predecessor of British Broadcasting Corporation) starts regular radio broadcasting
1923 The Great Kanto Earthquake
1925 Radio broadcasting begins in Japan (Osaka/Nagoya broadcast follows Tokyo broadcast)
1925 Regular broadcasting by Tokyo Broadcasting Station begins at Atagoyama
1926 Nippon Hoso Kyokai (NHK, Japan Broadcasting Corporation) established as Japan’s national broadcasting organization
1927 Middle school baseball competition at Koshien stadium broadcast
1928 The Grand Sumo Tournament broadcast from the Ryogoku Kokugikan
1939 Commencement of radio broadcasting from the Broadcasting Hall in Uchisaiwai-cho, Tokyo
“JOAK, JOAK, J, O, A, K. This is the Tokyo Broadcasting Station.” The first radio address broadcast in Japan filled the skies of Tokyo from a temporary broadcasting station in Shibaura, Tokyo, at 9:30 a.m., on March 22, 1925. The contracts for the receiving audience on that day numbered approximately 3,500. Radio broadcasting was also started in Osaka (June 1) and Nagoya (July 15) in the same year.

1925 The Dawn of Broadcasting Culture

Regular Radio Broadcasting
It was in 1906 when the first human voice was transmitted by radio wave. Within a mere decade, the world’s first radio broadcaster (KDKA Radio) appeared in Pittsburgh, the United States (1920). On the first day of its broadcast, it provided a flash report on the voting results of the U.S. Presidential Election and the election of the Republican candidate Harding. It is estimated that approximately 15,000 receivers, mostly those of amateur radio operators, could have listened in at the time. Radio quickly became popular, the number of receivers growing to 5 million two years later.
In Japan, radio broadcasting commenced at 9:30 a.m., on March 22, 1925. Two years after the Great Kanto Earthquake, “JOAK, JOAK, J, O, A, K, This is the Tokyo Broadcasting Station,” the first radio address broadcast in Japan, filled the skies of Tokyo from a temporary broadcasting station in Shibaura, Tokyo. The broadcast started with initial contracts for the receiving audience, which numbered approximately 3,500. Radio broadcasting was also started in Osaka (June 1) and Nagoya (July 15) in the same year. The fact that broadcasting had begun immediately after the Great Kanto Earthquake (1923) contributed greatly to helping people in Japan to understand the importance of receiving reliable information via broadcasting. However, broadcast stations at that time had a low output power, resulting in a limited area of clear reception within Tokyo (output power was only 220 W).

Great Dreams and Roles of Broadcasting

In his address at the opening ceremony for the broadcasting station, Governor Shinpei Goto of the Tokyo Broadcasting Station gave a famous speech regarding the function of broadcasting, saying: “I cannot imagine our cultural life of the future without broadcasting.” He entrusted great dreams and roles to broadcasting.
In July 1925, the Tokyo Broadcasting Station commenced regular broadcasting from a new station located at Atagoyama (1-kW output power). The mystery of broadcasting, with its invisible radio waves limitlessly expanding, moved listeners. Broadcasting was proclaimed to be evidence of a new culture.

1. Establishment of Nippon Hoso Kyokai: 1926
2. Address by Governor Shinpei Goto

“We want to transmit radio waves as far as possible”
Regular radio broadcasting in Japan commenced (July 12, 1925) at Atagoyama (elevation 26 m)


Mineral radio


Temporary Tokyo Broadcasting Station in Shibaura, Tokyo


Receiving contracts at the time of the opening broadcast numbered approx. 3,500.
Approximately 5 hours of broadcasting could be received for a monthly fee of one yen.


“We can hear it!” Minister of Communications, Tsuyoshi Inukai, and his family listening to the first test radio broadcast on March 1, 1925.
(From Kokusai Shashin Times)


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