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7 things you need to know about the Facebook Portal



Facebook has joined Google and Apple in a smart display with Facebook Portal and Portal Plus . These two screens are designed primarily with video calls and have Amazon's Alexa voice assistant on board, plus Facebook's own "Hey, Portal" voice service.

Interested in getting one? Here's what you need to know.

What does Facebook Portal do?

The portal is a new way to video with your Facebook friends. Keep in mind how many times you've video-enabled someone with your phone and arm to keep the camera right. It is not a problem with the portal.

The device sits on a table or table and the camera follows you when you walk in a 1

40 degree field of view so you can talk with a completely handsfree while doing other things. The camera can automatically pan and zoom to focus on you, even when in a room full of people. It also has a voice-boosting microphone.

Who is this for?

The people who are most likely to buy a portal are, in my opinion, those who already use Messenger to communicate with their friends and family on a regular basis. I know my teenager loves it because she mainly uses Messenger to contact, yes, everyone. She hates texting and makes regular phone calls. Therefore, the portal is a good fit.

I can also see that Portal is a big hit for anyone planning to stream an event, such as a wedding or birthday party, to friends and family.


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What is the difference between a Portal and Portal Plus?

The difference between the two units really comes down in size. The portal has 720p resolution and a 10.1-inch screen, while Facebook Portal Plus ($ 349 on Facebook) has 1080p HD resolution and a 15.6-inch screen.

The screen orientation is also different. The portal is always stuck in landscape mode while you can switch between landscape and portrait with Portal Plus.

How much does it cost?

There is quite a price gap between the two units. The portal is $ 199 USD and Portal Plus is $ 349. You can get a special deal if you buy two, but.

Facebook offers $ 100 of all two Portal devices, which means that a two-port package costs you $ 298. A Portal and Portal Plus cost $ 448 and two Portal Plus speakers are $ 598.

Where can i buy one?

From November 8, Facebook Portal and Portal Plus are available for purchase in the United States on Facebook's portal portal, Amazon and Best Buy.

How does the video call work?

My first concern about Portal was making video calls with my friends. Neither do they need a portal? Shown as long as they have Facebook's Messenger app or use the browser's web interface, they can connect to you on your portal.

To call, select your friend's icon (all your friends on Messenger will be listed after setting up the device) and say "Hey Portal, call [contact]." You can talk to up to seven people in a group call.

You can do more than just talk to your contact person. While in a conversation, try AR masks or share music from Spotify and Pandora. There is also a special narrative mode, so parents or grandparents can read young stories, complete with screen graphics, AR effects and music.

What does it do when you do not call?

There are a couple of features that make the portal useful when you're out of conversation. You can set the display to view photos from your Facebook photo album or view birthday memos and the weather using a feature called Superframe.

You can also use the speakers to play music from Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, or from Bluetooth-enabled devices.

Is the portal safe?

You have every reason to be concerned about security and privacy on Facebook . The company's record is not good.

That said, Facebook says it does not listen, watch or hold your video calls and they do not use your calls for advertising purposes. For extra security, portals video calls are encrypted, and the camera and microphone's AI technology runs locally on Portal – not on Facebook servers.

Additionally, Facebook says that the port's camera does not identify who you are. What all this means is that your calls will be safe, but Facebook acknowledges that they collect some data as how often you call, how long they call and keep logs on voice commands you speak with the Portal.

Still concerned? You can learn more about the portal's security and privacy settings, here .

Something else I need to know?

There is a big thing that makes the portal less than ideal: You must be a Facebook member to use it. So if you were planning to send one to Grandmother for Christmas and she refuses to go with Facebook (like my mother) then you're not lucky.

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