Facebook Portal vs. Facebook Portal Plus: What's the difference?

Facebook Portal

Facebook Portal is a smart display that hooks into a service you and billions of other people likely already use. It's the smaller of the Portal duo, but that also makes it a more practical option for everyday usage.

Facebook Portal

Light and Small

Seamless video calls via Facebook.
Growing list of third-party service, including Alexa.
AI-powered smart camera features.
Proper privacy guards in place.
Not as capable as like-sized tablets.
Only 720p resolution.

Facebook Portal Plus

The Facebook Portal Plus offers the same software experience as the original Portal, but in a much bigger size. Bigger speakers and a sharper display also make it worth your consideration.

Facebook Portal Plus

Window to Facebook

Massive 1080p display
20w speakers
Convertible between landscape and portrait
A bit unwieldy

For most people, the Facebook Portal is more than enough smart display. It's a 10.1-inch slate that can fit in any room of the house. The Portal Plus isn't quite as nimble, but it makes for one hell of a video calling device.

Bigger isn't always better

The Facebook Portal is an interesting device, touted as the perfect smart display for you and your Facebook-loving friends and family. Indeed, Portal offers the most comprehensive and polished interactivity with your Facebook account.

You can call your loved ones and talk to them even if they're on their phone, computer, or other devices compatible with Facebook. What's more, things like birthday reminders and status indicators for your closest friends will keep you connected.

The fun happens on a 10.1-inch display that comes in with 1280 x 800 resolution. It's not the sharpest thing in the world, then. This wouldn't be so bad for video calling and other basic uses, but considering you can watch videos on the Facebook Portal we'd be lying if we said we weren't disappointed that it wasn't at least 1080p.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Facebook PortalFacebook Portal Plus
Display Size10.1"15.6"
Display Resolution1200 x 800 (WXGA)1920 x 1080 (FHD)
Camera12MP, 140° Field of View12MP, 140° Field of View
Speakers2 full-range 10w drivers2 20w tweeters + 4" bass
Microphone2 front, 2 rear 360° array2 front, 2 rear 360° array
WirelessWiFi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Dual-band MIMO (2.4GHz and 5GHz)WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Dual-band MIMO (2.4GHz and 5GHz)
BluetoothBluetooth 4.2Bluetooth 4.2
Other FeaturesAmbient Light Sensor, Camera CoverAmbient Light Sensor, Camera Cover
Dimensions9.84" W x 8.20" H x 3.68" D8.78" W x 17.71" H x 5.73" D (Portrait)
ColorsBlack, WhiteBlack, White

That's where the Facebook Portal Plus comes in. It has a bigger 15.5-inch display with a more pleasing 1920 x 1080 — or 1080p — resolution. What's more, its display can swivel to transform between landscape and portrait modes.

Alongside the bigger display, the Facebook Portal Plus offers more powerful 20w speakers, featuring 2 tweeters and 1 bass woofer. That makes it plenty capable of being a capable home speaker.

Speaking of which functionality, the Facebook Portal Plus matches the Facebook Portal in all other areas. They both have the same AI-equipped 12MP camera which can automatically pan and zoom to keep subjects in view. They both have 4 omnidirectional microphones to offer clear audio no matter where you're speaking from. And they both have access to the same services which, alongside Facebook, includes the likes of Spotify, Alexa, Food Network, Pandora, and iHeartRadio.

It becomes a matter of preference, then: do you like your screens big or small? Make your mind up on that and determine whether you feel the staggering difference is worth an extra $150.

Many of you will likely prefer the smaller size no matter your feelings on the cost difference, and that's fine. In fact, it's great for those who want to be flexible with where they can move these things in their home. The base Facebook Portal model is advantaged in that regard, so unless you have thousands of dollars to put a Facebook Portal Plus in every room of your home, the smaller model may be exactly what you need.

Quentyn Kennemer