Facebook has revealed three new Portal devices: The Portal TV, Portal Mini and a redesigned Portal offing video chat and streaming.
The Portal TV uses a camera and microphone to turn your TV into a video calling device, while the others look like digital photo frames.
The user interface is familiar, not unlike an Apple TV or Roku, including Facebook products like its video-on-demand service Facebook Watch, the group television experience Watch Party and WhatsApp.
Soon, Facebook will add Amazon Prime TV and augmented reality games to the Portal TV homescreen.
The device ($149) will be available starting October 15, along with a redesigned 10-inch Portal ($179) and an 8-inch Portal Mini ($129).
Portal TV will feature Amazon’s Alexa smart speaker, which will allow users to make requests activated by saying the phrase “Hey Portal”. It will also feature augmented reality filters for callers.
“Hey Portal” triggers Facebook’s voice assistant in US English only, which handles device settings such as turning up or down the volume, calling someone or similar. “
For Facebook, the Portal lineup could help it gain footing in the fast-growing smart speaker market, not to mention inching it closer to TV screens, with the potential for other entertainment offerings down the road.
The company declined to share how many Portal devices it has sold to date.
Portal TV competes with rival devices from Google, Amazon and Apple, all of which offer a much wider array of entertainment.
Facebook would not comment on whether any other deals with other streaming firms, such as Netflix, were on the way.