From the photos we’ve collected, we spotted these few photographs with really cool and classic looking TV sets in the living room, which got me thinking about the evolution of TV in Singapore.
However, after speaking to Jerome of thelongnwindingroad.wordpress.com, I learnt that Singapore used to manufacture TV sets too! Even before the 1960s, western brands of TVs had already made inroads into the Singapore market. By the 1970s, the nation had set up its own light manufacturing and have established its own brand of television.
This brand was called Setron, and had a factory in old Tanglin Halt. They started by making black and white televisions which later evolved to colour televisions by the mid 1970s.
Jerome also shared that the Japanese brand, National, manufactured by the company formerly known as Matsushita, now known as Panasonic, was very popular in Singapore during these early years of television in Singapore. They had a show room near the present day Capitol building with a neon advertisement so visible that it could be seen from where the Esplanade now stands!
For those who had television sets then, it was not uncommon to have pictures taken in front of, or around the television set. Indeed, the TV served very much like a centerpiece of the living room. In the earliest days of television in Singapore, neighbours from the kampong used to invite themselves into your living room for some evening entertainment.
As the television business evolved and TV became more affordable, the western brands quickly overtook the market and the life of Setron as we knew it in Singapore, came to a halt.