Polley is the reason TV viewers no longer have to get up from their seats to change the channel. The inventor of the first wireless remote control for TVs died on May 20 of natural causes, Zenith Electronics revealed in a statement. He was 96.
Polley started working with Zenith in 1935, completing a 47-year career working with the electronics company’s engineering department.
It was there he invented the “Flash-Matic,” a remote control introduced in 1955 that used a “flashlight-like device to activate photo cells on the television set to change channels.” The cells would also let viewers turn the picture and sound on and off. [read]