Facebook 's Portal and Portal+ video-calling devices are now available for purchase the US.
You can purchase Portal for $199 USD and Portal+ for $349 USD from portal.facebook.com, Amazon.com, BestBuy.com as well as Amazon Books and Best Buy stores. Just in time for the holidays, you can also get $100 USD off any two devices - this means a bundle of two Portal devices is just $298 USD.
Both models are designed to make video chats feel less like a call and more like you’re actually in the same room. Portal improves video calling with a 10-inch 1280 x 800 display. For more flexibility, you can also opt for a 15-inch 1920 x 1080 pivoting display with Portal+.
Portal and Portal+ Product Features
- Powered by AI, Portal’s Smart Camera stays with the action and automatically pans and zooms to keep everyone in view, and Smart Sound enhances the voice of whoever is talking, no matter where they move.
- Make calls to and from Messenger on your smartphone or tablet. Portal supports group calls of up to seven people at the same time.
- Make hands-free voice calls by saying "Hey Portal" and stating who you’d like to call. Portal also has Amazon Alexa built-in, so you can ask a question, set a timer, add items to your shopping list, control your smart home, and more.
- Simple tools give you control over what you’re sharing, including the "Camera and Microphone Off" button to disable the camera and microphone, camera lens cover and the ability to set up a four- to 12-digit passcode.
- Experience shared activities like listening to music together or watching some of your favorite shows. Facebook has partnered with Spotify Premium, Pandora, and iHeartRadio, as well as Facebook Watch, Food Network, and Newsy — with more on the way, including CNN.
- Story Time brings bedtime stories to life using augmented reality effects to transform your face and voice into the story’s characters.
- Superframe can display photos and videos, provide birthday reminders, and show you when your closest contacts are available to connect.
Facebook stresses to clarify that it does not listen to, view or keep the contents of your Portal video calls, so this information cannot be used for advertising. In addition, Portal video calls are encrypted.
However, when you use Portal, Facebook does processes the same kinds of information as when you use Facebook Products on your other devices. Some of this information, including the fact that you logged into your account or how often you use a feature or app, may be used to inform the ads you see across Facebook.
Like other voice-enabled devices, Portal’s microphone sends voice commands to Facebook after hearing, "Hey Portal." You can delete your Portal’s voice history in your Facebook Activity Log. Facebook says it doesn't use Portal voice commands to target ads.
Last but not least, Smart Camera and Smart Sound use AI technology that runs locally on Portal, not on Facebook servers.