Although Facebook acquired virtual reality headset manufacturer Oculus in 2014, this is the first time it has developed a consumer hardware product in-house.
The higher-priced Portal's screen is 15.6 inches, versus 10 inches. The larger variant looks more distinctive, with a swiveling 15.6 inch screen that lets you orient it in landscape or portrait.
The device, which will be available for pre-order in the United States from Monday, is created to allow users to make video calls at home without having to stand immediately in front of the screen or hold a phone at arm´s length. We know, that sounds a little spooky, but Facebook has an extensive dedicated privacy section on the Portal website detailing everything that might give you pause.
In addition to their price and size differences, the Portal+ has a more powerful speaker that includes two tweeters with high-range frequency and a single, four-inch bass speaker for richer sound. The cameras are intelligent, meaning they pan and zoom, following people around the room as necessary. All video calls over Portals are encrypted.
If you're a company reeling from a data leak affecting 50 million users - not to mention the Cambridge Analytica scandal - what do you do next?
But didn't Facebook just get hacked?
But of course, with Facebook, privacy is a big concern.
Portal and Portal Plus make it easy to keep in touch with friends and family when you can't see them face-to-face in real life. While FB realizes that its reputation precedes it, it's worth noting that a simple update to its terms and agreements could change practically everything.
There were 17 billion video calls made on Messenger in 2017, double the number in 2016, according to official data. Even as these two tech giants team up, though, Facebook has asserted ownership over the device by offering its own voice controls, as well. This limits how a consumer would use the product as compared to the Echo, making it less appealing from a feature-list standpoint too.
After lengthy rumours Facebook has finally announced Portal, their answer to the Amazon Echo Show. If you buy two devices - either two Portals, two Portal Pluses, or one of each - you can save $100 on your purchase via Facebook.
Facebook expects to stand apart on the market because of Portal's touchscreen and the 400 million people who call through its Messenger service each month worldwide.
Anticipating scrutiny, Facebook said in a blog post that Portal had been designed with "privacy and security in mind", noting that the camera and microphone can be disabled with a tap and that it comes equipped with a lens cover.