In the United States, analog over-the-air television channels are numbered 2 through 69, and occupy the following frequencies:
- 54-88 MHz (Channels 2-6)
- 174-216 MHz (Channels 7-13)
- 470-806 MHz (Channels 14-69)
See list of local television stations in North and Central America.
English-language American commercial over-the-air television networks
...additionally, several of the cable-oriented shopping channels have obtained broadcast clearances, usually on low-power stations, in many markets. Among these are Home Shopping Network or HSN, and ShopNBC.
The WB, UPN and PAX are sometimes called "netlets" because they do not currently have the affiliate reach of the larger networks. UATV and America-1 are even smaller networks, many of whose affiliates take their program offers out of pattern, which is to say they schedule them at their own convenience. Several of the religious broadcasting networks also have out-of-pattern clearance arrangement with their broadcast affiliates, notably FamilyNet, Trinity Broadcasting Network, and World Harvest Television. And, of course, the Public Broadcasting Service also allows its member stations to run their programs out of pattern.
|Television Network ||Abbreviation ||Founded ||% of U.S. Households Reached ||# of Households Viewable ||Type of Network ||# of affiliates |
|National Broadcasting Company ||NBC ||1946* ||97.17 ||103,624,370 ||Commercial ||207 |
|Columbia Broadcasting System ||CBS ||1946* ||96.98 ||103,421,270 ||Commercial ||204 |
|American Broadcasting Company ||ABC ||1946* ||96.75 ||103,179,600 ||Commercial ||201 |
|Fox Broadcasting Company ||FOX ||1986 ||96.18 ||102,565,710 ||Commercial ||179 |
|Public Broadcasting Service ||PBS ||1969 || || ||Educational ||349 |
|United Paramount Network ||UPN ||1995 ||85.98 ||91,689,290 ||Commercial ||180 |
|Warner Brothers Network ||The WB ||1995 ||84.66 ||90,282,480 ||Commercial ||177 |
|Pax Network ||PAX ||1998 ||74.25 ||79,185,730 ||Commerc./Relig. ||94 |
|Trinity Broadcasting Network ||TBN ||1973 ||32.9 ||35,084,970 ||Religious ||61 |
- Although ABC, NBC, and CBS were founded prior to 1946, they did not begin continuous over the air TV broadcasting until that year.
Nicknames of major American networks are as follows:
- ABC: "Alphabet network"
- NBC: "Peacock network" (after the network's peacock logo)
- CBS: "Tiffany network" or "Eye network" (for the network's high-toned reputation and eye logo, respectively)
- WB: "Frog network" (after network mascot Michigan J. Frog)
Non-English language American commercial over-the-air television networks
American non-commercial television networks
- Public Broadcasting System (PBS) (public broadcasting)
- Deutsche Welle (DW TV) A German noncommercial television service which provides some English-language news programming to public broadcasting stations, and whose programming feed can be seen on a small number of independent public-broadcasting stations for part of their broadcast day.
Defunct American television networks
- American Independent Network - commercial network, predecessor to UATV
- DuMont Television Network - commercial network, 1946 - 1956
- National Educational Television (NET) - Educational network, 1952 - 1969, predecessor to PBS
- Overmyer Network - commercial network, 1967; also the United Network, not to be confused with UPN.
- Spanish International Network (SIN) - non-English language commercial network, 1961 - 1986, predecessor to Univision
- Channel America - first commercial network intentionally made up of low-power stations, a model for Pax and AIN/UATV, and the predecessor of America One.