In the USA in 1991, there were 172 million television sets compared to 47.2 million in 1961; and 1,102 commercial stations / 350 non-commercial stations compared to 543 and 62, respectively in 1961.
[Developing countries] In developing countries television sets are the possession of a minority, and in certain countries the programme content reveals that it is there primarily to serve the local elite and the expatriate community. Despite its phenomenal growth, in 40 countries television reaches less less than 10% of household units, and in more than half of the countries less than 10% of households have TV receivers. By contrast with radio, the cost of a television set is beyond the income of the average family; community sets, for example in village halls, have only partially mitigated this limitation. Also, television's limited range means that it is available chiefly to city-dwellers and reaches only a fraction of the rural population. Again by contrast with radio, the production of television programmes is an expensive business, and poor countries naturally have other priorities. The screens are therefore filled for many hours with imported programmes, made originally for audiences in the developed countries; in most developing nations, these imports account for over half of transmission time. It is in the field of television, more than any other, that anxieties arise about cultural domination and threats to cultural identity.