When you think of smart speakers, Meta (formerly known as Facebook) isn’t a name that immediately springs to mind. However, Meta has a smart speaker with a display — Portal — in its lineup. A report by The Verge suggests that Meta will not be making Portal smart speakers for consumers anymore. Instead, according to another report by The Information, Meta will make these products for businesses, that may need them for conference calls primarily.
The first Portal speaker — with two displays — was launched in 2018. Facebook sold it primarily for video calls but it also supported apps like Spotify and users could even stream videos on it. However, for video calls, users could only use their Facebook accounts.
The report by The Verge reveals that Meta has been reassessing its hardware plans. There have been investor concerns about the amount of money spent on hardware that hasn’t really paid off.
Meta sells four devices currently to consumers. These devices include Portal Plus, a 14-inch smart speaker with a display, Portal Go (8-inch smart speaker with a display, a 10-inch smart speaker with a display, and Portal TV — a camera that attaches to your TV for video calls and more.
The smart speaker market is dominated by Amazon with Apple and Google also key players. Meta’s Portal devices were primarily launched in the US only but were later expanded to a few other regions as well. The Portal range of devices was never launched in India. If the report does prove to be correct, then the devices will never be launched in India. Meta, according to the report, hasn’t commented on the issue as of now.