An immersive and engaging video chat experience introduced by Facebook “that make it easier to stay connected.” The company announced that the Portal and Portal+ speaker, which Facebook first revealed last month, are available just in time for the holiday shopping season.
Users can choose between a 10-inch 1280 x 800 display or a 15-inch 1920 x 1080 display, both with as little intelligent hardware visible as possible, to give the feeling of being in the same room with their loved ones. The screens are designed to provide users with an immersive and engaging video chat experience without all the distractions.
The main selling point for Portal is artificial intelligence-powered features like Smart Camera, which automatically zooms in on and frames video calls to make sure all the people in a room are in the same shot. Smart Volume modulates microphone intensity so that everyone in the room can be heard at a reasonable volume.
The devices allow users to make hands-free voice calls by saying “Hey Portal” and stating who they would like to call. Portal also has Amazon Alexa built-in, so users can ask a question, set a timer, add items to their shopping list, control their smart home, and more.
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Consumers can purchase Portal for $199 and Portal+ for $349 from store.facebook.com/portal, Amazon.com, BestBuy.com, and Amazon Books and Best Buy stores in the U.S., Facebook said on Wednesday. While Facebook hopes that users will surely find these useful early critics of the device cite Facebook’s poor record on privacy among the chief reasons they refuse to purchase a Portal.