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Image: Facebook

Facebook is adding a portable model to its line of Portal video-chat devices, while also introducing a slimmer version of its high-end Portal+ model and expanding the business uses of the products.

Why it matters: Facebook has seen strong demand for Portal as the pandemic has made video chat a mainstream application for education, work and family communication.

What's new:

  • The $199 Portal Go has a 10-inch display, battery and integrated handle, allowing it to be easily moved around the home and beyond.
  • An updated Portal+ features a 14-inch tilting display and is priced at $349.
  • Both models will begin shipping Oct. 19, with pre-orders starting immediately.
  • Facebook is also adding support for Microsoft Teams later this year.

The big picture: Facebook is investing heavily in hardware. After finding itself highly dependent on Apple and Google in the mobile realm, the company aims have a more central role on the next generation of devices, including VR and AR headsets, as well as communications devices such as Portal.

Go deeper

Oct 26, 2021 - Technology

Facebook seeks fountain of youth

Data: Piper Sandler Taking Stock With Teens Study; Chart: Axios Visuals

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Monday said that the company is pivoting its strategy to focus on young adults, following reports that teens have fled its apps.

Why it matters: A series of stories based on leaked whistleblower documents suggest the company sees the aging of its user base as an existential threat to its business.

Oct 26, 2021 - Technology

Apple's privacy changes eat rivals' businesses

Expand chart
Data: Branch; Chart: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

The latest earnings reports from Facebook and Snapchat show that Apple's mobile privacy measures are beginning to have a material impact on the ad businesses of some of its Big Tech competitors.

Why it matters: While experts don't think Apple's moves will do long-term damage to its rivals, they will force social media companies to invest heavily in new technology and products for the next few years — all while their ads business continues to experience significant headwinds.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Oct 26, 2021 - Technology

Facebook's scandals have been great for shareholders

Expand chart
Data: YCharts; Chart: Axios

Facebook has been embroiled in scandal for the past five years, and while the specific allegations change over time, a central theme is constant. Given the choice between commercial and moral imperatives, Facebook always seems to choose the option that is best for the share price.

Why it matters: Facebook's stock chart supports that narrative. Since the 2016 scandals alleging that the social network was infiltrated by foreign actors trying to influence the outcome of democratic elections, Facebook's revenues — and its stock — have been soaring.