Yet another player is hitting the smart-TV arena.
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Social-media giant Facebook is reportedly preparing to launch a streaming device that, much like Amazon’s Fire Stick, would plug into a TV and offer access to a library of online content.
It would come as part of Facebook’s Portal family, which includes two smart tablets that allow users to video chat with one another.
The device, expected to be announced this fall, according to The Verge, would join an already crowded field of popular smart-TV providers, like Amazon and Apple.
Unlike its competitors, however, Facebook’s device could feature a camera and microphones that would work with the platform’s video service. That might also allow the company to tap into fun extras, like augmented reality, face effects and interactive stories.
But the main focus will be on streaming: The Information noted in July that Facebook approached Netflix and Disney about adding their content to its hardware. Those companies did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Facebook’s device could come at a time where users are still weary of the company’s privacy practices. An Illinois lawsuit accused Facebook of violating the state’s Biometric Information Privacy Act by illegally collecting and storing millions of users' data.
And Facebook is still dealing with the fallout from the 2016 presidential campaign, in which experts argued Russian hackers used its user data to interfere in the election.
Though, it seems that the company is aware of that: When it released its first Portal devices, it added a physical plastic clip that users could attach to cover the camera.
Facebook shares were down 15 percent as of press time.