The Story Behind RCA/NBC's Development of TV in the 1920s-1930s by The WallBreakers published on 2018-09-03T17:33:06Z As 1933 ended, the business of RCA was improving and its deficit narrowing, although the economy continued to languish despite the New Deal legislation passed at President Roosevelt’s behest. Unlike film and theater, radio provided diversion and escapism for the american audience at no additional cost. It also provided lifelines to the real world through the fireside chats that President Roosevelt often broadcast. Sales were stimulated by RCA’s introduction of a new line of portable radios, sold for as little as $20. It allowed people to take communication and entertainment on the go. The Advertising industry, desperately trying to gain access to what little of the buying public remained, increasingly were using radio as its chief communication tool. By 1934, David Sarnoff had returned RCA to profitability. Gross sales were $79 million. Net Earnings were $4.25 million. Dividends on class A preferred stocks were paid up, and the company’s treasury possessed a surplus of $13.5 million. Sarnoff used his success to turn his thoughts towards television, something he’d believed in since 1923.