Sunday, 17 November, 2019

Facebook's $149 Portal TV brings video calling to the living room

Facebook announces video streaming device Portal TV Facebook unveils new models of Portal video chatting devices
Emmett Howard | 19 September, 2019, 13:20

After its first-ever hardware device got slammed by critics as a potential spying device previous year, Facebook on Wednesday unveiled a new generation of its "Portal" video chatting devices.

A hot potato: Facebook's biggest hurdle with Portal TV will be itself - that is, convincing users that it is safe to bring into their home.

Portal's Superframe can display your favorite photos, videos and birthday reminders so you always feel a little more connected to your family and friends.

As the company notes in its press release, all WhatsApp calls on Portal will be end-to-end encrypted. If you're someone who is more Privacy minded, the company has added a sliding cover which can disable camera and microphone.

Portal TV includes other features such as the ability to view Facebook Watch programs together. They can also stream video from Facebook Watch. Pre-orders have begun for USA residents from portal.facebook.com and select retail locations, and the Portal ($179) and Portal Mini ($129) both start shipping on October 15.

The new Portal devices, on the other hand, are much smaller.

Atletico Madrid and Juventus play out four-goal thriller
Juventus, meanwhile, drew 0-0 away to Fiorentina and are joint-second in Serie A, two points behind league leaders Inter Milan. Injuries wil prevent Juventus fullback Mattia De Sciglio, center back Giorgio Chiellini and winger Douglas Costa from playing.

Justin Trudeau brownface photo emerges as Canadian Prime Minister faces election battle
He said he had made a number of calls to "friends and colleagues" and will have many more to make. The organization later thanked Trudeau on its Twitter account for his apology.

Iranian president's visit to United Nations meeting in NY may be canceled
Iran vehemently denies the claim. "The way I look at it, this is the substitute for a military response, not the prelude to it". Such an outcome would embolden Iran and suggest that behavior that holds the global economy hostage will be met with impunity.

The Portal TV accessory costs $149 / £149, making it cheaper than the $179 / £169 Portal smart display, but a tad more expensive than the $129 / £129 Portal Mini. Soon, Facebook willadd Amazon Prime TV and augmented reality games to the Portal TV homescreen. Portal TV features a 12.5-megapixel camera with 120-degree field of view that pans and zooms automatically to keep everyone in the frame.

So what does the Portal TV do, and do you want it clipped to the top of your TV?

Standard models of the Portal, which ship on October 15, will come in $129 and $179 versions.

The Portal TV differs considerably from the rest of the Portal range in its appearance, given it doesn't ship with a screen of its own - relying instead on a television to display calls and the Portal interface.

Portal has other intelligence to make video calling more interesting. Portal will send voice commands to Facebook's servers where a human might listen to them in the name of improving voice recognition, but you're able to delete your voice history within your Facebook Activity Log. Facebook says it designed both devices to look like picture frames so they would blend in.

Facebook said it had chose to relaunch the process for Portal after adding the ability for users to opt out of having any audio reviewed. All these devices are now going to be in the U.S. and Canada, as well as being available in the UK, France, Space, Italy, Australia and New Zealand.

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