What Was the First Ever Video Camera?

Video cameras have become an essential part of our lives, allowing us to capture and preserve precious moments. But have you ever wondered what the first ever video camera was? Let’s take a look back in time to explore the history of video cameras.

Before the Video Camera

Before the invention of video cameras, people used still cameras to capture images. These cameras used a chemical process to create an image on a piece of film. However, these images were static and couldn’t capture motion.

The First Ever Video Camera

The first ever video camera was invented in 1888 by Louis Le Prince, a French inventor. Le Prince’s camera used a single lens and could capture 16 frames per second.

He shot his first video on October 14, 1888, in Leeds, England. The video captured traffic and pedestrians on a busy street.

Le Prince continued to work on improving his camera and created several more videos over the next few years. However, he mysteriously disappeared in 1890 before he could patent his invention or showcase it to the public.

Thomas Edison’s Contribution

Although Le Prince is credited with inventing the first-ever video camera, Thomas Edison also played a significant role in the development of motion pictures. In 1891, Edison patented his own motion picture camera called the Kinetograph. It used perforated film that allowed for smoother motion and better image quality.

Edison also created the Kinetoscope, which was a device that allowed people to view motion pictures individually through a peephole. This device was hugely popular and paved the way for modern movie theaters.

The Evolution of Video Cameras

Over time, video cameras continued to evolve with new technology and advancements in engineering. In the early 1900s, filmmakers began using multiple cameras to create more dynamic shots and angles.

In the 1950s, television became a popular medium for entertainment, and video cameras became smaller and more portable. This allowed for live broadcasting of events and news coverage.

In the 1980s, Sony launched the first-ever consumer video camera called the Betacam. It was small enough to be handheld and used cassette tapes to record video.


The invention of the first-ever video camera by Louis Le Prince was a groundbreaking achievement that paved the way for modern filmmaking and entertainment. Over time, advancements in technology have made video cameras more accessible and versatile, allowing people to capture and share their experiences with the world.