- This article is about the TV channel in France. For its parent company, see Groupe TF1.
TF1 (Télévision Française 1) is the oldest and most popular television channel in France, and one of the oldest in Europe, having been launched on 26 April 1935. It is the flagship channel of Groupe TF1, the largest French commercial TV broadcaster. TF1, flagship public channels France 2 and France 3, and competing commercial channel M6 are the four most popular TV channels in France.
TF1 was launched in 1935 as Radio-PTT Vision by the government of France. On 1 January 1975, it adopted the name TF1, and in 1987 it was privatised. This made Antenne 2 and FR3 the new primary state-owned channels, with the result that France is the only European country whose flagship public channel is not numbered 1.
TF1 was launched as Radio-PTT Vision on 26 April 1935.
Radiodiffusion nationale Télévision
Following successful trials of a "high-definition" 455-line electronic television system designed by Thomson-Houston, Radio-PTT Vision renamed itself as Radiodiffusion nationale Télévision (RN Télévision) in July 1937. It stopped broadcasting in 1939 during the Second World War.
During the German occupation in France, the channel was re-launched as Fernsehsender Paris, a German-French television channel, and was controlled by the German organization. Fernsehsender Paris stopped broadcasts on 12 August 1944, one week before the liberation of Paris.
RDF Télévision Française
Television broadcasts in France resumed on 1 October 1944 under the name Télévision française, and following the creation of Radiodiffusion française on 23 March 1945 the television service was renamed as RDF Télévision française.
Radiodiffusion française was renamed as Radiodiffusion-télévision française (RTF) on 9 February 1949.
Première Chaîne de l’ORTF
Following the creation of RTF Télévision 2 (now France 2) in 1963, the first channel was renamed as Première chaîne de la RTF (First Channel of the RTF), and later as Première chaîne de l’ORTF (First Channel of the ORTF), when the ORTF (But Now TDF and La 1ère) was created on 25 July 1964.
TF1, which originally stood for Télévision Française 1 (French Television 1), was created on 1 January 1975 when law no. 74-696 on 7 August 1974 (which split the ORTF into 7 organizations) came into effect, and the rebranding from Première chaîne de l’ORTF to TF1 came into effect on 6 January 1975.
Colour television was first introduced to TF1 on 1 September 1975 when FR3 (now France 3) agreed to supply some of its colour programmings to TF1, and the conversion to colour was completed on 20 December 1975 when the first colour news program on TF1 aired.
1984–1987, 1985-1992 (Opening/Closing ID)
Since TF1’s privatisation in 1987, TF1 is no longer expanded as Télévision Française 1.
This logo was used as a transitory logo between the triangle shaped logo and the current logo. This logo was used from summer 1989 to February 1990, but the TF1 text is used until the present day. The triangle-shaped logo from 1987 was still used sometimes.
On 2 February 1990, the most familiar and the longest-lived logo of TF1 was unveiled. It consisted of a red and blue container-shaped box with the TF1 text in white, which resembles the national flag of France.
A gradient was added to the logo on 10 July 2006, and the channel also launched a new graphics package and set of idents, which lasted for seven years.
TF1 introduced its current logo and a new graphics package on 28 September 2013. The blue on the left of the logo fades into the red at the right through a gradient. A new set of bumpers, idents and on-air graphics, designed by the Paris-based agency Naked, was also introduced that makes use of the classic ITC Avant Garde font.
A new, more premium, graphics package was introduced on 6 January 2021, its 46th anniversary, which was also designed by Naked. TF1 now uses the Config Condensed and Karu fonts, replacing ITC Avant Garde. The current logo was retained, but now also appears in a glossy, glass style.