Remember when Facebook gave us the scary Portal displays? These were screens with built-in cameras so that we could ostensibly talk to loved ones. Well, Meta (the company formerly known as Facebook) is now hoping that you will start using a Portal device as a second monitor.
Meta has revealed that its Portal devices, including the 2nd generation Meta Portal Plus and the Meta Portal Go, can be used as a second display for productivity thanks to integration with the Duet Display app. So now even your monitor can spy on you, just in case your smartphone and smart TV weren’t enough.
“We’re introducing support for the Duet Display app, which allows you to turn your Meta Portal Plus (Gen 2) and Meta Portal Go into a second display for your Mac or PC when you’re not video calling,” the company said. in an August 10 blog post on the Meta website. “We are also launching the Meta Portal Companion app on Mac for Meta Portal touch-based devices.”
It’s all thanks to support for Duet Display, an ambitious software project started by ex-Apple engineers. Duet Display turns your smartphone, tablet or laptop into an external computer or second screen. It follows Apple’s design ethos to make everything super simple for the user. No keys or dongles required.
The Meta Portal Companion app allows users to control their portal device from a PC or Mac. Users need to download the Duet Display app on both the primary device and the Meta Portal device, and it seems that the Meta Portal Companion app is only needed on the primary device.
Meta aggressively tries to turn itself into a hardware company and throw off Facebook’s baggage. By converting Portal devices into second displays, the company also aims to become a productivity company. This ties in well with Horizon Workrooms, the Meta Oculus virtual office space showcased by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg late last year. While there’s no syncing between Oculus VR and Portal devices, we can assume the thought has crossed Zuckerberg’s mind once or twice.