The social network would enter an already crowded field of voice assistants.
Queenie WongFormer Senior Writer
Queenie Wong was a senior writer for CNET News, focusing on social media companies including Facebook's parent company Meta, Twitter and TikTok. Before joining CNET, she worked for The Mercury News in San Jose and the Statesman Journal in Salem, Oregon. A native of Southern California, she took her first journalism class in middle school.
ExpertiseI've been writing about social media since 2015 but have previously covered politics, crime and education. I also have a degree in studio art.Credentials
"We are working to develop voice and AI assistant technologies that may work across our family of AR/VR products including Portal, Oculus and future products," a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement on Wednesday.
CNBC, citing several people familiar with the matter, said Facebook has been working on the new voice assistant since early 2018 but it's "unclear how exactly Facebook envisions people using the assistant." Facebook's Portal currently taps into Amazon's Alexa.
Facebook employees in Redmond, Washington, led by Ira Snyder, director of AR/VR and Facebook Assistant, are reportedly leading the effort to build a new AI assistant.
This isn't the first time Facebook has tried to build a virtual assistant. Last year, the company shut down a chat assistant called M that was used in Facebook's messaging app.
Watch this: Facebook Portal aims to take Messenger video chat up a few notches
Originally published April 17, 11:54 a.m. PT. Update, 12:49 p.m. PT: Adds Facebook comment.