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Facebook Portal Gets a Refresh for Features

CIOInsider Team

The market of smart display technology got swamped with the arrival of Facebook Portal that hit last year, which enabled users to perform video chat with their Facebook friends. The portable system can be placed on a desk or table or near the TV, so that users can talk with the other completely hands-free while engaging in other activities. The idea of Facebook Portal served its purpose for avid users who were seeking for a video chat system using Messenger application. But with the latest up-gradation, Facebook Portal seems to have integrated some other features into the system, by exploring other various aspects that a smart display can do. While video calls using smart displays weren’t a new feature, Facebook’s Portal and Portal+ got a huge welcome for its smart

cameras in October last year. Now, the social media giant has launched three new portal devices Portal Mini, Portal TV, and a revamp version of 10-inch smart display in its new line of Portal versions.

The features that distinguish each from the older version can be boiled down to the screen size and display features. The Portal and Portal Mini come with an adaptive display that self-adjust the brightness and contrast to the surrounding in which it is set up. The AI powered camera does an exceptional job of freeing the user from remaining at one point while doing video chat. It automatically pans and zooms to stay with the user as they move on the video chat. Moreover, the integration of Smart Speaker with both the devices enhances the audio levels as well as automatically cut the background noise to a great level. Along with the new features the company has managed to address the criticism drawn on privacy during the initial release, by including a switch that disables both camera and the speaker with a single tap. In addition to that, Facebook has also provided an integrated camera cover, which is similar to Amazon Echo Show 5, for physically blocking the camera lens. Other than providing a smart option for video chat over Messenger, it will also offer Whatsapp calling facility. Users are also enabled with options to stream content from CBS All Access, Starz, Pluto TV, SHOWTIME, Red Bull TV, and Neverthink using the respective apps. Not just visual content, but music from Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and iHeartRadio Family are also brought into the updated portal.

While the new Facebook Portal with 10-inch HD screen is priced at USD 179, the Facebook Portal Mini is an 8-inch HD screen for USD 129. The Facebook Portal TV that can be connected with the TV screen for streaming audio and video is available for USD 149. Facebook foresees to colonize other smart devices by making a great leap over the smart home concept.

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