Despite the recently reported data breach that may have compromised the data of 50 million users, Facebook made a decision to launch the device to be able to participate in the upcoming holiday shopping season.
With the products, Facebook will seek to bring some entertainment to your living room-camera and microphone rolled into one. It also reportedly minimizes background noise to enhance your voice. Portal can be used to call Facebook friends and connections on Messenger, even if they don't have Portal. Facebook doesn't listen to, view, or keep the contents of your Portal video calls.
The company officials also revealed that the Portal would not be going to display Facebook advertisements.
Facebook will offer Portal in two sizes - a $199 model with a 10-inch horizontal screen and a $349 "Plus" version with a 15.6-inch screen that can switch between vertical or horizontal orientations. Towards that, it will also respond to "Hey Portal" when users are ready to make a video call. As more people enter a room, Smart Camera automatically widens to keep everyone in the frame.
User concerns on digital security are escalating, and Facebook has played its part in driving up the fears. With such a device at home, some users may worry that their conversations at home may be recorded and passed on to third parties without their consent. He said: "Privacy is built deeply into Portal". The company is savvy enough to address doubts up front about data-privacy protections for the Portal devices.
Facebook knows its audience - or at least it has a lot of information about it. "All the calls are always completely private". That launch was postponed in lieu of the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
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Unfortunately, such data breaches have reduced the people's trust in the social network over the past few months.
Facebook on Monday launched a range of AI-powered video-calling devices, a strategic revolution for the social network giant in its bid for a slice of a market now dominated by Amazon and Google. And, to me, the decision to go with Alexa is the most interesting thing about the Portal.
Also, while the Portal leverages its video screen to allow users to apply augmented reality emojis and other AR features to their video calls, the screen doesn't do much more than that.
The new Show, in stores Thursday, has a larger 10-inch screen (over the original 7 inch) but a steeper price, initially, than competitors, at $229. "We've seen a rise of video calling, on both Messenger and WhatsApp - it has been a tremendous trend." .
According to Google, Home Hub aims is to create "a more helpful, thoughtful home". Like other voice-enabled devices, Portal only sends voice commands to Facebook servers after you say, "Hey Portal". All this is done using AI, which does all the guesswork for a convenient hands-free experience. Facebook isn't pre-loading its social networking app or image-messaging app Instagram on Portal, emphasizing the device's role in more active communications instead of passive browsing.
Facebook aims to compete with Amazon as it launches video-calling device.