BBC unearths functioning TV from 1936

I wish anything I had lasted this long: TVs, laptops, girlfriends...

I am currently writing this on my second MacBook Pro. I'm also waiting for a call on my third iPhone while watching "Star Trek" on my second HDTV from my third Xbox 360. Technology today seems to fizzle out or become redundant quickly. But it wasn't always like that.

In fact, the BBC recently tracked down a 73-year-old TV set that still works and is believed to be the oldest working television in Britain. It's tuned to but one built-in channel--the BBC, as it was the only channel available in England when the set was built. The extent of its controls are for vertical hold and volume.

The TV has a 12-inch screen that's reflected to the viewer via an angled mirror at the top. While the previous owner has wired it to work with an external tuner--much like the DTV boxes millions of us picked up last year--the current owner is on a mission to restore the box to its fully original state, something we find to be quite cool.

We're wondering if in 70 years time collectors will do the same for modern HDTVs or iPods. If there are any still around, that is. But it's not only TVs from the '30s that outlive their expectations; the BBC article about the television has some great comments from users around the world who are sharing stories of their favorite devices that still work long after the warranties are expired.

About the author

    With more than 15 years experience testing hardware (and being obsessed with it), Crave freelance writer Matt Hickey can tell the good gadgets from the great. He also has a keen eye for future technology trends. Matt has blogged for publications including TechCrunch, CrunchGear, and most recently, Gizmodo. Matt is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CBS Interactive. E-mail Matt.

     

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