It’s #ColourTVDay, so let’s talk about TV.

Obviously, but not the boring technical mumbo-jumbo. How about diving into the wonderful TV memories from every Indian’s memories.

The antenna adjust karo era


No TV owning Indian from 1980s can forget the days when getting a steady Doordarshan signal was in itself a herculean task. It was a co-ordinated family affair, where one member used to adjust the antenna on roof while others passed the instructions to and fro. The fruits of such huge efforts were some memorable shows like: Chitrahaar, Malgudi Days, Byomkesh Bakshi, Hum Log, Alif Laila, Buniyaad etc.

Sundays of that era were most sought after due to some popular Sunday specials like: Rangoli, Mahabharat, Ramayan, Chandrakanta, Jungle Book, Talespin, Ducktales, Shaktimaan etc.

The Video Cassette rental era

Renting a VHS player and a bunch of video cassettes had its own fun. As it meant a good family time, where neighbours also used to join in every mohalla. Popular blockbusters on VHS were always in demand and it had its own market mushroomed throughout the nation.

The 8-bit Video Game era

During 1980s and 1990s we got our taste of the most 8-bit games with the knock-offs brands sold in the Indian market. Games like Contra, Mario, Duckhunt, Tetris introduced us to the interactive world of 8-bit gaming. Thanks to these, for those fond memories of group gameplays, cartridge sharing, sweet sibling fights and requesting parents for new cartridge every season. This also ensured we Indians were not left behind in the then video game race.


The Cablewala era

90s marked the introduction of multiple private channels in India. This offered multiple show choice for the Indian viewers. Now we didn’t have to rely on only one channel for content and the choice was wider. This resulted in numerous memorable and innovative shows from that era like: The Zee Horror Show, Tara, Hum Paanch, Dennis The Menace (Hindi), I Dream of Jeannie (Hindi), Filmy Chakkar, Shararat etc.

The Shining Disc era

One technology that truly metamorphosed the TV for us was the advent of CDs. It offered an unparalleled picture quality for its time. CDs were more affordable than the VHS, hence was steadily adapted by most Indian households.

The TV Recharge era


Till the early 2000s our content-viewing choices depended upon the local area cable supplier. This changed with the introduction of direct-to-home satellite cable tv services like DishTV, Tata Sky, DTH etc. This also marked the beginning of genre based channels, as viewers had the freedom to pay for whatever they wished to watched.

The TV-Got-Smart era

With smart devices in our pockets and content accessible anywhere, the TV had to get smarter to satisfy the ever-demanding modern TV viewers. With paid streaming services and YouTube being the most popular content provider for smart TVs, sky is the limit for content range and choice.

That was a brief look at the journey of TV for us Indians. With the rise of personalised content viewing on smartphones, TVs may have squeezed into their own niche. But still it holds a special place in every Indian’s heart.

Cover Image: Freepik