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Facebook officially launches Portal TV, a $149 spying device you connect to your TV

Ah, so that’s what we think our privacy is worth!

facebook's new portal tv video calling device on an entertainment center
Image: Facebook

Facebook apparently didn’t hear the market when nobody bought last year’s Portal devices, because it has released a new trio of them.

There’s a redesigned Portal, a Portal Mini in case you really want to put Facebook’s cameras in your kids’ room and need something cute to match, and the pièce de résistance, the Portal TV. That last device puts a Facebook camera in the most used room in your house, right above your TV.

Does anyone feel like we’re putting too many cameras in our homes yet?

Facebook wants to put more cameras in your home, with Portal TV

Listen, I get that video calling is an essential part of modern life to keep in touch with family, friends, and the occasional doctor. That doesn’t mean you need to put a Facebook-branded camera in your home though.

Just use FaceTime, or your Android device, or better yet, get off the couch and go meet people in real life, as mother nature intended.

  • The $150 Portal TV device turns your TV into a video-conferencing tool
  • You can also use apps like Spotify or Amazon Prime Video also on your TV, so it’s like a dystopian streaming box, like if George Orwell had known about video streaming when he wrote 1984
  • Facebook also released a redesigned Portal ($180) with a 10-inch touchscreen, and a new Portal Mini ($130) which has an 8-inch touchscreen
  • All three devices have Facebook’s AI voice assistant, Portal, if you felt like giving even more data to Facebook
  • Oh, they all come with physical switches to turn off the camera, and a physical shutter you can slide over the camera itself for good measure. Anyone think Facebook knows we don’t trust it with cameras in our home yet?

I dunno, growing up watching movies like Poltergeist I’m justifiably wary of anything claiming to turn my TV into a Portal. I’ll just stick with my familiar smartphone, which dials home just as much but not to Facebook…

What do you think? Interested in a new Portal device from Facebook? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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