A colorful moment in TV history

TEXT OF STORY

SCOTT JAGOW: And now for our visit into the history books, Back to Business. On this day, 56 years ago an important moment in television history. Here's Stacey Vanek-Smith:


STACEY VANEK-SMITH: CBS was issued the first color TV license in 1950, but there were complaints about the new technology. For one thing, people with black and white sets couldn't see the color picture.

In spite of that, CBS aired the first-ever color broadcast in 1951. It was called "Premiere" and featured Ed Sullivan.

RCA wasn't far behind with its own technology. It aired the "Colgate Comedy Hour" in color in 1953.

RCA's technology won out, because people could watch the color shows on their black and white sets.

Wasn't long before the FCC made RCA's technology the national standard, but the country still preferred shades of gray until 1968 when color TVs outsold black and white sets for the first time.

About the author

Stacey Vanek Smith is a senior reporter for Marketplace, where she covers banking, consumer finance, housing and advertising.

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