Cable Tv Essay Research Paper Cable TelevisonThe

Cable Tv Essay, Research Paper

Cable Televison

The history of cable television has had a great jump from houses being

able to have 12 channels in 1948 until modern day inventions like directv, which

can offer you up to 600 channels. In 1950, 14,000 homes nationwide had cable

television, while in 1996, more than 64 million households chose to subscribe to

cable. Cable has went through many changes over the years, from antennas to

satelites, and much more.

Originated in 1948 as a service to households in mountainsor geographically

remote areas where reception of over-the-air television signals was poor. Antennas

were erected on mountain tops or other high points, and homes were wired and

connected to these towers to receive the broadcast signals. By 1950, 70 cable

systems served 14,000 subscribers nationwide. In the late 1950s, when cable

operators began to take advantage of their ability to pick up broadcast signals

from hundreds of miles away, access to these “distant signals” change the focus of

cable’s role from one of transmitting local broadcast signals to one of providing

new programming choices.

By 1962, almost 800 cable systems serving 850,000 subscribers were in

business. In the early 1970s, the FCC continues its restrictive policies by enacting

regulations that limited the ability of cable operators to offer movies, sporting

events, and syndicated programming. In 1972, Charles Dolan and Gerald Levin

of Sterling Manhattan Cable launched the nations first pay-TV-network-Home Box

Office (HBO). This Venture led to the creation of national distribution system that

used a newly approved domestic satellite transmission. Satellite changed the

business dramatically, paving the way for explosive growth of program networks.

By the end of the decade, nearly 15 million households were cable subscribers.

While the delivery of programming via satellite was evolving, the 1984 cable

act effectively deregulated the industry, stimulating investment in cable plant and

programming on an unprecedented level. There can be little doubt that

deregulation had a strong positive effect on the rapid growth of these cable

services. From 1984 through 1992, the industry spent more then $15 billion on

the wiring of America, and Billions more on program development. This was the

largest private construction project since World War II. By the end of the decade,

nearly 53 million households subscribed to cable, and cable program networks had

increased from 28 in 1980 to 74 by 1989.

Cable also promises to be a major player in online services, data delivery

and high speed access to the Internet. Due to cables use of fiber optic and

coaxial cable, cable systems using, using high speed cable modems, can offer

access speeds hundreds times faster than traditional telephone lines. In addition,

many cable companies offering high speed Internet access have also developed

local content to give users access to community information. Cable networks have

also led the way in development of top quality Internet sites, including such

offerings as ESPN Sports Zone, Discovery Online, and CNN Interactive. By the

end of 1995, there were 139 cable programming services available nationwide, in

addition to many regional programming networks. By the Fall of 1996, the number

of national cable video networks grew to 162.

Today cable television is available to approximately 97% of television

households in the United States. More then six in ten television households, more

than 64 million households, have chosen to subscribe to cable. The average

subscriber now receives more than 40 channels, and over 45% of all subscribers

receive 54 channels or more. Americas thirst for quality television has been the

driving force behind the cable industry’s growth. The willingness to invest in new

technologies and programming has made cable television more than just an

antenna service. It is now an integral part of American culture.


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