Facebook Portal Makes Video Calling Easier – What if you could easily connect with your closest friends and family and feel like you’re in the same room — even when your miles apart? Today, we’re excited to announce Portal and Portal+, two new video communication devices for the home that dramatically change the way we keep in touch.

Thanks to AI technology, Facebook Portal Makes Video Calling Easier and more like hanging out, while a widescreen display lets you enjoy every moment together. When you can’t be there, Portal and Portal+ let you feel there.

Facebook Portal Makes Video Calling Easier

Video phones were once seen as the future. Why would you want to merely talk to people when you could see them as well? And thanks to smartphones, messaging apps, and video calling that has come to pass. But do we really need hardware dedicated to video calling?

Connect with Facebook and Messenger Friends

You can call Facebook friends and connections on Messenger even if they don’t have Portal. Calls can be made to and from Messenger-enabled smartphones and tablets. Portal supports group calls of up to seven people at the same time.

Voice Control + Alexa

Portal offers hands-free voice control. You can start a video call simply by saying “Hey Portal” and noting who you’d like to call. Portal also has Amazon Alexa built in, so you have access to a robust voice experience to ask for sports scores, check the weather, control smart home devices, order groceries, and more.

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Built with Privacy + Security in Mind

We know that privacy and security are important when you bring new technology into your home. That’s why we designed Portal with tools that give you control:

  • You can completely disable the camera and microphone with a single tap.
  • Portal and Portal+ also come with a camera cover, so you can easily block your camera’s lens at any time and still receive incoming calls and notifications, plus use voice commands.
  • To manage Portal access within your home, you can set a four- to 12-digit passcode to keep the screen locked. Changing the passcode requires your Facebook password.

We also want to be up front about what information Portal collects, help people understand how Facebook will use that information, and explain the steps we take to keep it private and secure:

  • Facebook doesn’t listen to, view, or keep the contents of your Portal video calls. Your Portal conversations stay between you and the people you’re calling. In addition, video calls on Portal are encrypted, so your calls are always secure.
  • For added security, Smart Camera and Smart Sound use AI technology that runs locally on Portal, not on Facebook servers. Portal’s camera doesn’t use facial recognition and doesn’t identify who you are.
  • Like other voice-enabled devices, Portal only sends voice commands to Facebook servers after you say, “Hey Portal.” You can delete your Portal’s voice history in your Facebook Activity Log at any time.
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To learn more about Portal’s privacy features, visit portal.facebook.com/privacy.

How To Pre-Order Portal From Facebook

The Portal and Portal+ are both now available to pre-order in the United States. You can order one directly from Facebook at portal.facebook.com, or from Amazon or Best Buy. The Portal costs $199 and the Portal+ costs $349, shipping started in November 2018

Portal from Facebook is obviously competition for the Echo line, so be sure to read our Echo Show review before pre-ordering. And with Portal using Facebook Messenger for its video calls you should check out the Messenger features everyone should try.

By Sunrise

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