As Christmas present-buying season ramps up, Meta has been running TV ads for its Portal smart displays. However, canny buyers may want to hang on until Black Friday or the Boxing Day sales, since Portal is seemingly not long for this world as a commercial product.
Reuters reported that as part of the cost-cutting accompanying the 11,000 layoffs that Meta announced last week, it is going to “stop developing smart displays and smartwatches”. It’s not a complete surprise: in June Meta said that it would phase out Portals as consumer devices, with plans to focus on the business market instead.
Now that strategy is being binned too. “It was just going to take so long, and take so much investment to get into the enterprise segment, it felt like the wrong way to invest your time and money,” Meta CTO Andrew Bosworth told staff. Portal originally launched in 2018 as the company then known as Facebook’s response to Amazon’s Echo line of smart devices, complete with a Spotify integration.