From TV Singapura To MediaCorp

Just last Sunday 23 Nov 2008, Channel 8 telecast the gala show of its 45 years in TV broadcasting. Before that, it showed some preview of it like the one below about its history or milestone;

As you can see, the icons shown in sequence were as follow;

1. TV Malaysia Singapura

2. TV Singapura;

Note the similarity of the above two icons.

3. RTS (Old and New Logo);

4. SBC;

5. TCS;

6. MediaCorp;

Credit : Above all – MediaCorp of singapore

I practically grown up with our TV broadcasting as I’m 46 yrs old and they are 45 yrs! But one thing I find it confusing with that 45 years gala show and its premeire : Should TV Malaysia Singapura come before TV Singapura (as shown in the above sniplets shown on TV previously)?

I’m not sure and let’s wait for the actual gala show on 23 Nov 2008 Sunday. While I’m hoping to get more details from the Sunday Gala show, I’m rather disappointed. Below is the edited version of part of the whole show, depicted the history of our TV broadcasting shown in “news broadcasting” style;

For the benefits of those who don’t understand Mandarin, let me try to write down the main points (correct me if I’ve made any mistakes);


1961- Started planning TV Transmission

1963 – Trial Transmission

1963, 2 Apr – TV Singapura officially started transmission.

1963, 23 Oct – Channel 8 launched.


1965 – RTS formed.

1974, 1 Aug – Started color transmission.

1977, 1 Nov – All programmes in color transmission.


1980, 31 Jan – SBC formed as a Stat Board and separated from Ministry of Culture.


1994 – TCS formed as an Enterprise to replace SBC.

1999 – MediaCorp established replacing TCS.

It seems like I still cannot gather from the above show on whether TV Singapura or TV Malaysia Singapura started first…so I Googled and found the following infos from the Singapore Infopedia on Television Singapura;

1. 1963, 15 Feb – Television Singapura was launched as Singapore’s first monochrome television station.

2. 1963, 2 Apr – Television Singapura started regular transmission. Channel 5 was first started, and Channel 8 was launched in Nov, 1963.

3. 1964, 1 Jan – First advertisement was aired to reduce relying on subsidies.

4. 1964, Nov – The TV station joined the Radio Singapura to form RTS (Radio Television Singapura).

5. 1966, 26 Aug – A new $3.6 million building at Caldecott Hill was officially opened to house the Television Centre.

6. 1974, May – RTS began colour TV test transmission.

7.1980, 1 Feb -The Department of Broadcasting (RTS), Ministry of Culture, became the Singapore Broadcasting Corporation (SBC), a statutory board.

8. 1994, 1 Oct – SBC was dissolved to make way for Singapore International Media (SIM), a fully privatised entity that led to Television Corporation of Singapore (TCS) taking over the television broadcasting role of SBC.

9. 2001 – TCS became Mediacorp TV under a newly restructured group, Media Corporation of Singapore (MediaCorp Singapore).

Weird, howcome there is also no mention of the TV Malaysia Singapura? So I Googled again and found the following from Mica website;

1963 – Inception of national television, Television Singapura. Later renamed Television Malaysia (Singapura) when Singapore became part of Malaysia on 16 Sep 1963.

So for how long TV Malaysia (Singapura) lasted? Probably until Singapore separated from Malaysia on 7 Aug 1965.  In Nov, 1964 RTS (Radio Television Singapura) already formed and some equipments from TV Malaysia (Singapura) still remained in used probably until 1966 as can be seen in this below photo from PICAS;

Credit : Above 2 – National Archives of Singapore, PICAS.

Do you still remember in 4 Apr 1988, we celebrated 25 yrs of Television service in Singapore by launching a new set of stamps;

In this set, all stamps are showing the SBC logo only.

Before I end, do you realise there is a mistake in the Gala show? For those who understand Mandarin, see if you can identify the mistake;

In fact I practically grown up with our TV broadcasting service as I’m 46yrs this year and they are 45.

11 Responses to “From TV Singapura To MediaCorp”

  1. 1 profkingsfield2004 Friday, November 28, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    what was the logo between SBC and RTS?

    It should be TV Singapura first when it was first launched, then TV Malaysia (Singapura)

  2. 2 profkingsfield2004 Friday, November 28, 2008 at 3:51 pm

    In the beginning 2 channels and they were called Channel 5 and Channel 8, then after that I get so confuse what they call the channels. can u explain please?

  3. 3 laokokok Tuesday, December 2, 2008 at 8:01 am

    Hi Peter,
    It’s still RTS except it is a new logo of RTS. Yes TV Singapura should be first then TV Malaysia Singapura when Singapore merged with Malaysia some months after TV Singapura was formed.

    My confusion started when they started the cable for Starhub and removed the maintenance for the TV antenna for HDB flat. Since then, I cannot receive the Malaysia Channel 3 and Channel 10 via the cable (as I didn’t subscribe to Starhub and the HDB TV antenna is even worst with no one claim resposibility).

    Then they have Channel U and Channel I to compete with Channel 8 (for Chinese programme) and Channel 5 (for English programme) respectively. That was the best time where we started to have new and interesting shows on TV. But don’t remember who mentioned that Singapore is too small to have more than 1 TV station, so back to square one and Channel I gone with only a ‘shadowed’ Channel U. Not much different from Channel 8 show.

    Of course we had that Kids Central for our kids and depending on time of the day, showing the Tamil show as well. Now change to OKTO channel and a separate Channel for Tamil show.

    Not forgetting the Channel NewsAsia for many good repeating and reapeating news and documentary shows too.

  4. 4 py Wednesday, December 3, 2008 at 11:28 pm

    I remember that I have the 25 years of television first day cover. That year, I started collecting stamps, and somehow my parents gave me that first day cover. How fast time now flies!

  5. 5 laokokok Thursday, December 4, 2008 at 7:35 am

    Oh talking about the first day cover, wonder why this 45 yrs of television they didn’t come out with any first day cover or stamps?

  6. 6 Don Thomas Monday, February 9, 2009 at 11:11 pm

    Hello, wonder if I am the first in US to post? I am married to Anita Harichandra (formerly of Armed Forces Radio, with Leslie Pillay and SBC) wonder if anyone out there knows her? And, if you know where I can get some clips of her on air? We do have tapes of her National Day coverages & etc. I know she missed home and would love to talk/contact some Singaporeans.

    Don Suwanee, GA, USA

  7. 7 anon Sunday, February 15, 2009 at 11:13 pm

    TCS replaced SBC. Not the other way round. Poor girl read the script wrongly.

  8. 9 Wright Thursday, May 20, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    What would you want to be written on your tombstone?

  9. 10 Kristy Thursday, August 19, 2010 at 4:55 pm

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