March 1948 Radio-Craft
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics.
See articles from Radio-Craft,
published 1929 - 1953. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
Significant advances in electronics - and all other
kinds of technology for that matter - occurred during World War II, which in conjunction with the
U.S. government selling surplus equipment at the end of that war at very low prices, cause a boom in
consumer electronics markets. The established radio business and the fledgling television markets were
abetted by quickly expanding numbers of broadcast stations. This chart from early 1948 show the number
of currently licensed AM, FM, and TV stations, with projections out 20 years to 1968. I don't have the
data from 1968, but almost certainly the numbers were much larger than predicted, fueled largely by
portable radios in automobiles and hand-carried models. Transistorized circuits (the
transistor was invented in 1947, just a month before this chart was made) with their smaller size,
smaller battery requirements, more rugged construction, improved circuit designs, and higher reliability
provided another major kick to the market in the early-mid 1960s.
U.S. Radio and Television Stations January 15, 1948
This chart shows the new high to which the number of U.S. AM,
FM and television stations has risen. Besides those shown there are over 30,000 radio-equipped police
cars and an ever-growing number of mobile installations in taxis, trucks and other privately-owned vehicles.
Educational stations are also at an all-time high, with 32 AM and 38 FM licenses.
U.S. Radio Stations Jan. 15, 1948
Posted April 19, 2017