Facebook launched a range of AI-powered video-calling devices.
Facebook is aiming for a slice of the smart speaker market, currently dominated by Google and Amazon.
The social network announced Portal and Portal+, two new video home communication devices that could dramatically change the way we keep in touch and connect with friends and family.
During calls, Portal can also play music on Spotify or videos from Facebook Watch, as well as tell children stories via augmented effects app Story Time.
It also comes bundled with Amazon’s voice interface “Alexa”, enabling users to shop or control household appliances.
These devices, available for pre-order in the United States as of Monday, October 8th, is designed to allow users to make video calls at home without having to stand immediately in front of the screen or hold a phone at arm’s length.
Portal and Portal+ are also available at portal.facebook.com, as well as Amazon and Best Buy – and will begin shipping in November. You can bring Portal home for $199 USD and Portal+ for $349 USD.
Sensitive times for privacy at Facebook
Portal comes at a sensitive time for Facebook, as data breach has been a constant issue for the Zuckerberg app, who recently suffered a 50 million user account breach by hackers in the latest privacy embarrassment.
Earlier in the year, it was forced to admit that the personal data of tens of millions of users had been hijacked by Cambridge Analytica, a political firm working for Donald Trump in 2016.