Whether Facebook wants to publicly say so or not, the social media powerhouse is now the new kid on the smart TV device block, up against the likes of Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV and Roku. Portal TV, introduced to consumers last September as a one-trick-pony video-chat device available for $149 and accompanied by a splashy multimedia campaign featuring The Muppets. But it has swiftly become something much more. Over the last six months, Facebook’s product now features a variety of programming services and applications. There’s content from Amazon Prime Video, CBS All Access and Fandango Now (more than 100,000 movies and TV episodes on-demand); audio from Spotify, iHeartRadio and Pandora, games like Words with Friends (a rare move by parent Zynga into TV) and Battleship, and what are believed to be the first TV features incorporating augmented reality anywhere.
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