Facebook launches video device, says privacy is 'very, very, very important'

See Facebook's first hardware product

Facebook could put a camera in your home with video calling Portal device

It will also show you photos and videos from your Facebook library.

London- Facebook on Monday launched a range of AI-powered video-calling devices, a strategic revolution for the social network giant which is aiming for a slice of the smart speaker market that is now dominated by Amazon and Google.

Do you plan on picking up a new Portal?

Portal integrates Amazon's Alexa voice assistant to handle search queries, and Amazon collects audio files of requests made to Alexa.

The company's Portal smart display is a 10.1-inch 720p device with a 12MP front camera.

A four mic array picks up voices for voice recognition and calling, while the stereo speakers included are capable of 10W total output. Users can say "Hey Portal" and note who they'd like to call, signalling Facebook may have aspirations for Portal to become a larger AI brand. Rival smart speakers with screens lack a video-chatting app that is as popular.

Pompeo says US, N.Korea continue to make progress toward denuclearization - International
Analysts say Washington may now consider new options as China, Russia and South Korea seek to relax sanctions. The North has said this can't be used as a bargaining chip for denuclearization.

Portal and Portal+ are available now for pre-order in the U.S. - from Facebook at portal.facebook.com, as well as Amazon and Best Buy - and will begin shipping in November. Both come in white or black. They also have integrations with Spotify, Pandora, and Food Network, and a lot more stuff coming soon, so you can watch and listen to music or videos on the big huge screen.

Powered by AI, Portal's Smart Camera and Smart Sound technology take all of the guesswork out of video calling, letting you enjoy a more convenient, hands-free experience.

The company worked with a USA film director in order to make the camera movements feel natural, said Nick Fell, marketing director for Facebook´s Portal team. There's also a physical camera cover provided with each Portal and Portal+ unit, as well as a button allowing you to "completely" disable the camera and microphone.

The device is controlled via voice commands, users can start a video call with a Facebook friend by saying "Hey Portal, call ..." followed by the name of the Facebook contact they wish to talk to. Lastly, Portal only sends those voice commands to Facebook servers which are said after the "Hey Portal" keyword.

Portal is Facebook's answer to the Amazon Echo Show. Smart Camera helps you read a fun story via a simple teleprompter, perfectly framed, while your loved ones on the other side watch as your face and voice transform into the story's characters. In addition, video calls on Portal are encrypted, so your calls are always secure, ' the company said in the blog post announcing the device. If you splash out on two Portals, you can save $100, with a pair costing just $298. You can also receive $100 United States dollars off any two devices - this means a bundle of two Portal devices will be priced at $298 USD, so you can share the experience right out of the box.

The Portal is available for preorder online and will arrive in stores in November.

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