Florida – Cities
Today, well over 100 channels are active in the Sunshine State. All major networks are represented, including ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox. Several cable and satellite companies provide their services as well. These include DirectTV, Dish Network, and Satellite TV Florida. Cable companies include ComCast and Florida Cable, Inc. Internet TV has become available as well, with Centurylink offering its web-based PrismTV service to its subscribers.
The first television station in Florida came on the air March 21, 1949. It was WTVJ channel four in Miami and was the 16th station to come on the air in the entire country. In its early days it broadcast shows from four networks: NBC, CBS, ABC, and Dumont. In time, however, it became a CBS affiliate and remained that way until 1987. When it was sold to NBC.
The next station to appear in the Sunshine State was WFTL channel 23 in Fort Lauderdale. Its sign-on date was April 7, 1953. It broadcast shows from both NBC and Dumont until April 13, 1957, at which point it ceased operations. WSUN channel 38 started broadcasting from St. Petersburg on May 31, 1953, and stayed on the air until 1970. Five other Florida stations signed on for the first time in 1953, from West Palm Beach, Pensacola, Fort Lauderdale, Panama City, and Jacksonville. Some are still on the air, while others have gone dark.
1954 saw several additional stations appear. The first was WEAR channel three in Pensacola, which started out broadcasting both CBS and ABC stations until it turned exclusively ABC in 1955. It remains on the air to this day. WINK channel 11 began broadcast operations in Fort Myers, and was the only commercial station in southwest Florida till 1968.
WEAT channel 12 started in West Palm Beach on January1, 1955. In 1973 its call letter changed to WPEC, which remain to this day. WCTV channel 16 signed on in Tallahassee on September 1, 1955 (technically it’s licensed in Thomasville, GA. However, the FCC designates it as a Tallahassee station).
WFLA channel eight began operations in Tampa on February 14, 1955. Its sole purpose for existing was originally to broadcast Tampa’s Gasparilla Parade, but two weeks after the event it launched a full 18 hour operations day. It switched its call letters to WXFL in 1983 but returned to the original one in 1989.
Nine additional stations appeared in the Florida market from 1955 to 1958.
DTV Channel Lists are available for the following cities in Florida.
Jacksonville, Florida (FL)
Miami, Florida (FL)
Tampa, Florida (FL)
St. Petersburg, Florida (FL)
Hialeah, Florida (FL)
Orlando, Florida (FL)
Tallahassee, Florida (FL)
Gainesville, Florida (FL)
Cape Coral (Ft. Myers), Florida (FL)
Pensacola, Florida (FL)