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7 tips to make calls on Facebook portal



The Facebook Portal was designed to make people feel like they're in the same room, even when they're far away from each other.

I have to say, it's so damn cool. The camera follows you as you walk around, and the sound quality is actually decent.

If you're just getting started with the portal, here's how to make your first video call and some tips on managing calls easier.

Who can you call?

  Portal Friends

Messenger Friends on Portal


Alina Bradford / CNET

First and foremost, it is important to understand that you can only call people you are connected to on Facebook or Messenger . Basically, you make messenger video calls on a larger screen.

Want to call Aunt Jenny with your portal? She needs a Facebook account.

Starting a Call

To start a call, say "Hey, Portal." It will answer you with a beep. Then say "Call [contact name]". It is very likely that Portal will give you a selection of people to call you. Just say the number that appears above the person's Facebook photo when the options appear on the screen.

If you do not want to talk to Portal to make a call, go to the Home screen and touch the icon of the person you want to call. Then call when the information box appears.

From here, you can turn off the video or audio as you would when you call your phone through Messenger by pressing the microphone or camera icons on the screen.

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Wearing a mask

Just like regular messenger calls, Augmented Reality (AR) lets you add funny masks and filters to refresh your conversations.

During a call, tap the gray effect symbol and then the orange effect symbol . There you can select your filter or mask by tapping on it. To turn off the effects, tap the mask icon .

Muting a call

Need to mute your microphone during a call? Press the left button at the top of the screen. When a red light comes on, the camera and microphone are off.

Of course, the person you talk to will see that you press the key. So do not think that you are doing something with the down-low.

Group Calling

You can invite up to six people to a video call with you. To add more people, tap the blue icon while you're on the phone or on the phone. A friend list is displayed at the bottom of the screen. Scroll right to find the person you are looking for, and then tap the appropriate icon.

Forwarding a call from your portal to your phone

  Transferring to the portal

Transferring a call from your phone to the portal.


Alina Bradford / CNET

If you're on the phone but need to move to another room or go outside, you can forward a portal call to your phone if you have the messenger app installed. Just open Messenger on your phone and touch Call with [contact] at the top of the screen.

You go back to your portal? You can also transfer a call from your phone to the portal. Touch the transfer icon located in the upper-right corner of your Messenger call screen.

Only receive calls when you are at home

You want calls only to your phone when you are on the move? Turn on the Home and Away feature.

To turn it on, go to the Home screen and swipe left. Then touch Settings> Incoming call settings> Only when you are at home . Finally, go to your phone. A popup will ask if you want to enable Home and Away. Confirm and you are ready to go.

This feature uses the location of your mobile phone and portal to automatically determine if you are home or not. If you are not present, calls will only be sent to your phone.

The Facebook portal video device launches under privacy concerns

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