19 April 2014

Facebook Newsroom: “Introducing A New Optional Feature Called Nearby Friends”

When Nearby Friends is on, you can see when your friends are traveling if they’re also using this feature and sharing with you. You’ll be able to see the city or neighborhood they are in, including on their profile. When you see a friend visiting a place you’ve been, it’s the perfect opportunity to send a recommendation for a great restaurant. You can also make last-minute plans to meet up with a friend who happens to be in the same place you’re headed to. Andrea Vaccari

Cool idea, but is has a lot of problems to overcome: privacy concerns about constantly sharing your location with , notifications overload from hundreds of people you don’t really care that much about, and not least battery life, an area where Facebook is pretty bad. I don’t give it much change of succeeding, much like the many apps that have tried this before. I also find in interesting how the announcement stressed multiple times (including in the title!) that the feature is opt-in, as opposed to the usual Facebook approach of turning everything on and hoping people won’t notice.

Facebook wants to help you find your friends, but do you want the help? 90 Seconds on The Verge

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