There have been several rumours about Facebook getting deeper into hardware, and just this past month, it launched a video-calling device called Portal. Now, it’s reportedly working on another camera-equipped device.
But this one will sit on top of your TV.
Cheddar, which accurately leaked news of the Portal months before it launched, has claimed Facebook is working on a TV camera that seems to offer Portal-like video chatting via your TV and allows you to stream content from Facebook Watch. The device, codenamed Ripley, would essentially be a set-top box that would rival Apple TV, Roku, Fire TV, and others in the media streamer space.
But the unique aspect about this device is that it’d have camera, allowing your entire TV work work as a giant Facebook Portal. There’s nothing quite like it on the market right now, though companies like Microsoft have explored this idea with various products such as the Kinect camera.
Facebook’s new Portal device is primarily meant for video calls, though it does offer videos through Facebook Watch and music through Spotify and Pandora. We suspect Ripley will need more content options before customers consider attaching it to their TV. Plus, potential customers will have to somehow trust Facebook again, considering Ripley will essentially be a device that can watch them at all times from the heart of the home.
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