Facebook Portal Go Review (2021): Convenient, Comfortable, and Portable

For more than a week, I've been using Facebooks Portal Go portable videophone. It is used by my 6-year-old daughter and son, aged 4 and 6, to communicate with their parents all across the country. It's been working well. It's an immersive, entertaining experience that isn't too different from the Portal TV.
My 4-year-old daughter threw an uncontrollable tantrum last night while we were on a phone call. My daughter grabbed the Portal Go out of my hand and ran off to the living room. After my son calmed down I went to find him. I found her upstairs, snuggled up in her bed, with her grandparents reading to her on the device.

It is hard for a non-parent to understand how much your children have lost over the past two years, even if they are young like mine. Although I don't have the ability to offer them everything, I can give them these. Portal Go has been the best way to bring my long-distance family closer together.

Around the World

Photo: Facebook

When Facebook went dark in January, I was able to quickly identify which people had friends or family abroad. Facebook is used by more than 3.5 billion people worldwide, including in countries like the Philippines where my family is from. Maria Ressa, the Nobel Prize winner, is working to combat misinformation on Facebook.

Arguments about Facebook are like arguments about having access to the grid. It is possible for a company to have very questionable business practices while still providing critical infrastructure. Facebook is often referred to as the internet. This is not to suggest that I use Facebook as carefully as possible, but it has allowed the Portal Go to seamlessly integrate into my daily life.

It feels and looks like an Amazon Echo Show. The gray, cloth-colored body conceals two 5-watt speakers as well as a 20-watt subwoofer. The base houses a small, irritating charging port and a rechargeable battery. This battery is the worst part of this device. The battery was exhausted by a Portal call that lasted an hour with interactive stories and YouTube videos. It was completely drained after a day at my desk listening to music, checking out different apps, and attending several Zoom meetings. It doesn't last very long and it takes quite a while for it to fully charge from 40 percent.