Facebook is planning to launch a standalone video chat device sometime in 2018. We are expecting it to look similar to Amazon Echo Show.
Facebook will call this device ‘Portal’. It will also bring Facebook’s video content on the display along with video calling features. It is expected to come with the price tag of $499.
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The most notable rumored feature of this device is its facial recognition, that will connect people automatically to their Facebook accounts. So, users will not have to log in before they could make a video call. By recognizing you, it will automatically connect you with your account for making video calls.
The device will also have the capability to run apps like Spotify and Netflix.
When I first heard about this device, I install thought about the privacy, Facebook has known history of using our personal data for advertising purpose. Now think of a device having always-on hardware with a camera and microphone permanently connected with Facebook. It can gather everything about us and use it understand how we live and react in the real world.
Facebook already tried a consumer electronics product back in 2013 when it launched Facebook Phone with HTC. It was a failed attempt to launch an Android phone. Now, the company wants to compete with Amazon and Google. This product will also be the first finished hardware product from Facebook’s secretive Building 8 lab.
Facebook is expected to officially launch this device at Facebook’s F8 developer conference later this year in May. The rumored price is also high enough to give users a reason to go for Amazon Echo Show.
What do you think about Portal? Will you trust Facebook and keep a device that can upload your data to Facebook? Share your views with us in comments.