When were television remotes invented

Last Updated on June 28, 2022 by Admin

When were television remotes invented? The first remote was invented in 1950. A Remote is an electronic device that can control another device from a distance. At early age, remote controls use ultrasonic technology. Currently, they are consumer electronics infrared devices. They can control different type of features such as power, volume, television channel, play back etc. The first-time remote was developed by zenith Electronics Corporation. That remote was connected to the television by wire. The name of the first remote was lazy bones. Eugene Polley was the first man who developed the first wireless television remote  in 1955. The name of the first wireless remote was flashmatic.

when were television remotes invented

History of the television remotes 

When were television remotes invented? To know this we should know the history properly. In 1893 Nicolas tesla first described a remote control for a television.

In 1903 Spanish engineer named Leonardo Torres demonstrated a radio-controlled boat. In 1932 first remote control air plane was seen. During the first world war Germans used first remote control boats. In the late 1940s remote control was used for automatic garage door openers. In 1950 first television remote was seen. After that remotes were improved day by day for television sets. 

First tv remote 

In 1950 first tv remote was created by the zenith radio corporation. This company was the first remote control inventor. It could turn a television on and off. It could also change the channels. It was not wireless. The remote was connected to the tv by a bulky cable.

Zenith Flash matic remote 

In 1955 first wireless remote was developed by Eugene Polley. He invented first wireless tv remote. It was operated by photocells. It worked by using a beam of light. The directional flashlight was used to activate the four control functions. In this way, pictures and sound could be on and off. During sunny days flash Matic remote had some problems. In this case, channels were changed randomly. For working properly flashmatic needs to be pointed precisely at one of the sensors.

Some other contributions to developing remote 

In 1952 a remote control named blab off was created. The remote could turn a tv’s sound on or off.

In 1956 Adler developed a wireless remote that was called zenith space command. The remote used ultrasound to change the volume and channel. Adler played a vital role to develop wireless remote.

In 1970 RCA introduced electronic remote control that used digital signals and metal oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor memory. It was used for color television.

In 1980 most popular remote control was the Starcom cable tv converter that used 40 kHz sound to change channels.

After that, a Canadian company produced a cable tv converter with infrared remote control. 

How do television remotes work?

Besides, when were television remotes invented? We should know the working principles of television remotes. At first ultrasonic sound was used. Currently, television remotes worked on two technology. They are infrared technology and radio frequency technology. In most cases in television infrared technology is used. Infrared technology is also known as the transmitter. It emits pulses of infrared light that correspond to specific binary codes These codes represent commands such as power, and volume. Infrared ray remotes use led light to transmit infrared signals. We can’t see infrared light. But it can carry signal that is detected by the appliance and sensor of the digital device. Remote controls are powered by AAA and AA batteries.

For a single channel a carrier signal can be used to trigger a function. On the other hand for multi-channel we need to modulate the carrier with signals of different frequency.

Radio frequency remote does not use infrared light. They transmit binary codes to a receiver by radio waves. Radio frequency remotes have much greater range than IR remotes. Radio frequency remotes can capture 100 feet or more distance. We can find these remotes in modern satellite television systems. Radio frequency remotes have a much greater range than IR remotes.

Radio remote control has two parts. They are transmitter part and receiver part. The transmitter part is also divided into two parts. They are RF remote control and the transmitter module. Transmitter module is small. We can use transmitter module as a component in a larger application.

The receiver are two types. They are super regenerative receiver and a superhetrodyne. Super heterodyne receiver is used because it has stability as well as high sensitivity.

We can also get it in small package and lower price.

Usage of television remotes 

We use television remotes because we need to manage several functions of tv. There are some universal remotes that are made for some major brand devices. At first, we found ultrasonic remotes. In the 2000s Bluetooth and Wi-Fi were connected to the remotes. In this time we have also found voice control and motor sensor function. As a result, we can do different types of work. For smart tv, we can use a remote as a keyboard. By the early 2000s the percentage of using remote control devices were increased rapidly. According to the consumer electronics association the average us home had four remotes that time. Currently we can see different types of remotes for different household appliance. As a result we have different types of remotes. To solve the problems we can use the universal remote. In this case the universal remote is programmed with the operation codes for the major brands of tv, DVDs etc.

Effect of early television remote controls 

After knowing when television were remotes invented? We should also know the early effect of television remote controls. At early age remotes were used to turn off TVs Remotes could change the channel. At that time cables were connected to the channel. This problem was solved by inventing flashmatic remotes. Viewers could change the channel according to our choice. But another problem was seen. Channel could be changed by hitting TV by sunlight. Television programming was changed due to invention of the remote control. Advertisement segments were reduced due to have remotes in hand.

When was the black and white TV invented

When was the black and white tv invented? For knowing the history we need to go back to the 19th century. With the invention of radio waves, we get the first idea of inventing black and white tv. In television history, black and white televisions have great contribution.


Television remotes are really great invention for TVS. Television is a great telecommunication media in the world. In the present world there is hardly any family who is not familiar with tv. After inventing remotes tv becomes more acceptable home appliance to us. In this article we have described when were television remotes invented? We have also described more remote related topics. Hope everybody will get benefit from this article.

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