Facebook has added a Zoom invitation to Portal TV, giving users the ability to make video calls for work or pleasure on a much larger screen
Facebook adds zoom support to its Portal TVs, allowing users to hold conference calls on the big screen. Zooming has already been available on Portal Mini, Portal and Portal + in the past. Now and after more than a year of a pandemic that has forced many workers into a work environment, Portal TV is joining the club.
The original Facebook Portal was released in 2018 as a Facebook smart screen, which allowed users to make video calls and interact with friends and family using a webcam and monitor. Portal TV appeared in 2019 as a slightly different variation on the Portal. It still has a webcam, but connects to the TV via an HDMI cable to use the user’s flat screen as a monitor capable of making video calls.
With the incredibly popular video call service Zoom now coming to Portal TV, Facebook says it brings the ability to interact professionally through walk-through rooms or smaller groups from the comfort of a user’s couch. Or, as the company noted, social zoom calls can take place on a much larger screen than ever before. However, even with these benefits, there are real concerns about whether Portal TV – or, more accurately, the company that owns it – should really be trusted as a tool to conduct Zoom calls.
Zooming the TV portal may not be a good idea
As enticing as the idea of a zoom session on the big screen may be, Portal TV can be a problematic product. When it was first published, CNET wrote “review“a device that advocated buying. Not because of the device’s functionality, but because of Facebook’s history of alleged data misuse and its controversial actions in connection with its increasingly polarized social media platform. Two years later, the same issues continue to plague Facebook. hit by criticism for letting the personal data of 533 million Facebook users leak online. It’s not the kind of breach that promotes trust in a device equipped with an active microphone and camera that Facebook advertises for its ability to “automatically scroll and zoom to continue the action. “
For many who regularly use Zoom for both business and entertainment, turning on video calling may be enough to invest in Portal TV and let their privacy concerns take a turn for the worse. True, this is the only realistic scenario in which Portal TV makes sense – when users do not give such a significant value to data security. Facebook can (and does) try to convince consumers to protect their privacy as much as it can, but it still has too many problems with the data circulating around Facebook, and on a consistent enough basis, to be a warning against putting Portal TV in the living room .
Next: Why Zuckerberg now says Apple’s tracking apps could be good for Facebook
Source: Facebook, CNET
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