Last week we learned that Facebook was working on a huge smart speaker with a virtual assistant and a huge 15 inch touchscreen. Fresh hints are showing that the company is actually developing both a $100 smart speaker and a tablet focused on video calls.
Bloomberg has the scoop on it, saying that Facebook’s experimental wing Building 8 has been working on this machine for a while now. A laptop-sized gizmo has been speculated for debut during the F8 developer conference next spring. Facebook wants to build a machine that connects people across the globe and makes them feel that they’re in the same room.
Building 8 has a reputed leader, Regina Dugan, a previous Google executive. I have to say that Facebook hasn’t handled previous hardware good, with all the Facebook branded handsets being failures. Now a 15 inch tablet sounds like overkill and Facebook videocalls themselves aren’t as popular as Skype or FaceTime. I have a feeling that Oculus may somehow connect to the new system, or at least its new version from next year, priced at $200.
A 360 degree camera is speculated for this device, but sources close to the matter say that the device isn’t likely to be ready in time. I have yet to be convinced by the format to be honest…