14 August 2019
Facebook is reportedly working on a new kind of Portal device that will be coming without a display. It will connect to the TV in one's house and use its display for video calling purposes. It is also likely to have streaming services support that users can watch their favorite TV shows and movies.
The reports related to a TV-connected Portal device first emerged last year and now, we are hearing about the support for streaming services. A new The Information report claims that Facebook is holding talks with different streaming service providers like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and Disney+. The exact details about these discussions and their status are currently unknown. All the involved parties have also refrained from responding to queries on the matter.
There will also be support for AR technologies so that users can interact with virtual objects. This could result in different experiences Apart from the additional streaming service support, this new device will be the same as the currently available Facebook Portal devices. It means it will offer Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp video calling features.
There will be AI-powered features to pan and zoom depending on where and how many users are there in the room. The new device is reported to be internally codenamed as Catalina. But when and if this device becomes a reality, it will be interesting to see if Facebook will be able to convince potential buyers to go for the device amid all the privacy concerns.