Last year, Facebook announced Portal devices with an emphasis on video conferencing. Portal devices offer advanced video calling features such as Smart Camera that automatically pans and zooms to keep everyone in view and Smart Sound that minimizes background noise and enhances the voice of whoever is talking, no matter where they move. Through software updates, Facebook added support for Amazon Prime Video app, WhatsApp and more. Today, The Information reported that Facebook is now working on new form factors for Portal.
According to the report, Facebook is working on a streaming device code-named Catalina that will include camera features of existing portal devices, but will lack a display. This upcoming streaming device will make use of TVs in the living room as its display and will come with physical remote. Customers can buy this device and connect it to their TVs to start enjoying the Facebook Portal experience.
Facebook is also in talks with Netflix, Disney, Hulu, HBO and Amazon to bring their respective apps to this streaming device. Along with Messenger/WhatsApp video calling experience and video streaming apps, this upcoming device will also come with AR features that will allow users to interact with virtual objects while they’re on a video call.
Source: The Information