This station was transferred from Westinghouse to RCA in 1923, and moved to New York City.
WEAF acted as a laboratory for AT&T's manufacturing and supply outlet Western Electric, whose products included transmitters and antennas.
The early effort fared poorly, since the uninsulated telegraph lines were susceptible to atmospheric and other electrical interference.
In 1925, AT&T decided that WEAF and its embryonic network were incompatible with the company's primary goal of providing a telephone service.
WEAF maintained a regular schedule of radio programs, including some of the first commercially sponsored programs, and was an immediate success.
In an early example of "chain" or "networking" broadcasting, the station linked with Outlet Company-owned WJAR in Providence, Rhode Island; and with AT&T's station in Washington, D. New parent RCA saw an advantage in sharing programming, and after getting a license for radio station WRC in Washington, D.
In 1936, the Orange Network affiliate stations became part of the Red Network, and at the same time the Gold Network became part of the Blue Network.
Various histories of NBC suggest the color designations for the two networks came from the color of the pushpins NBC engineers used to designate affiliate stations of WEAF (red) and WJZ (blue), or from the use of double-ended red and blue colored pencils.
On April 5, 1927, NBC expanded to the West Coast with the launch of the NBC Orange Network, also known as the Pacific Coast Network.
The Bell System, AT&T's telephone utility, was developing technologies to transmit voice- and music-grade audio over short and long distances, using both wireless and wired methods.
The 1922 creation of WEAF offered a research-and-development center for those activities.