New information has come to light detailing Facebook's future plans to take over your TV, with set-top box that will offer chat and video calls, as well as streaming services like Netflix.
Now sources, talking to The Information, detail that Facebook has approached a number of providers about bringing TV content to that device. Those companies include Netflix, Amazon, Disney, Hulu and HBO, with the idea being that you'll be able to access premium services through the new Facebook device, as you might on a Roku or Apple TV box.
The new Facebook device will have a wide-angle camera and use AI to track you around the room, designed to extend Facebook's messaging services beyond the smartphone. Recently we've seen reports that WhatsApp could move to being a multi-platform service, no longer dependent on a SIM card for access, and that could bring WhatsApp calls to your TV.
The Information reports that the Facebook device will have a physical remote control. Initially codenamed Ripley, it's now believed that this accessory is codenamed Catalina.
It's thought that this new device will be launched in October 2019 in North America, but with plans to also launch it in Europe. With many suspicious of Facebook's track record in privacy, the thought of having a Facebook-powered camera in your living room might not be too well received.
The appeal will come down how extensively you use Facebook services as a calling platform - and if you want that to be something you do on your TV. Some TVs already offer cameras and Microsoft's Xbox offered Skype through Kinect - but so far, domestic video calling hasn't really ventured onto the big screen.
We have approached Facebook for comment on these plans.
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