Facebook unveils video chat devices Portal amid major privacy concerns

Facebook unveils video chat devices Portal amid major privacy concerns”

Their Smart Camera is set to follow the movements and keep everyone in the frame: as more people enter into the room, the SC will automatically widen to keep everyone in view, but giving you the option to focus in one person (Spotlight mode).

Facebook debuted two video-chat devices, per an announcement. There's also Smart Sound Technology which reduces background noise and enhances the voice of the user who is talking, no matter wherever they move.

Also, it isn't just for a one-to-one chat as the Portal range can suffice for group chats as well, with the ability to accommodate 6 participants at a time. However, it will not be possible to record. The only time when the Portal only sends your voice commands to the Facebook servers, when you use the phrase Hey Phrase.

Both Portal devices can connect with any user who has the Messenger app, Portal or no Portal.

Smart screens also feature augmented reality.

While Facebook Portal might seem like the best smart speaker available on the market, no one can blame people for not wanting it in their homes. It also acts as a Bluetooth speaker, and Spotify Connect lets it power multi-room audio. The Portal's compatibility with Amazon Alexa expands its functionality with tens of thousands of voice-powered apps, or "Alexa skills", that are another avenue for reaching audiences or providing customer service.

Preorders for the device are ongoing but Facebook is not shipping until November in the United States and other parts of the word (currently unknown). Facebook doesn't listen to, view or keep the details of your Portal video calls like other voice-aided devices, Portal listens for the wake phrase ("Hey Portal") and, once detected, routine your voice command. However, buyers can get two Portal devices as a bundle for Dollars 298, which is USD 100 off. The devices are priced at $199 and $349 respectively, and Facebook is offering a $100 discount when two devices are bought at the same time.

The primary on many consumers' minds is the underlying question of whether we should even trust a company like Facebook to have smart devices in our homes.

The smaller Portal is an Amazon Echo Show style device, with a giant display size of 10.1-inch and resolution of 1280×800 pixels and 10W dual speakers.

Portal also enables shared activities like listening to music together or watching your favourite shows. The device will allow users to disable the camera and microphone with a single tap and to lock it with a numerical passcode.

Users can call Facebook friends and connections on Messenger even if they don't have Portal.

Unsurprisingly Facebook installs a version of Messenger on the Portal devices and you can converse freely with other Messenger users whatever platform they might be on.

Anyway, Portals will start shipping in the United States next month to anyone courageous enough to take the plunge.

Facebook says it would not store Portal video on its data centers. But there are still a lot of security concerns associated with Facebook's Portal making it to homes.

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