Facebook today announced a new feature dubbed “Nearby Friends” that the company says is meant to help you meet up with your buddies or find ones that are traveling. In its announcement, Facebook says that the feature is optional and that users can select groups of people that can see when you’re nearby or turn it off completely.
In addition to showing when you’re nearby, you also have the option of directly sharing your location with certain friends for a certain period of time. When you do this, your friends will see your exact location on a map so that it’s easier to meet up.
Finally, Facebook says that its new Nearby Friends feature is useful for learning when and where your friends are traveling. When a traveling friend has his or her Nearby Friends feature turned on, you’ll be able to see the city that they’re visiting in their profile.
Facebook has been offering location-based features for a while, including check-ins and the like. This new Nearby Friends feature seems to be an even stronger effort to get you to use Facebook to meet up with your friends in the real world, though, as it’ll notify you when you’ve got friends in your vicinity. Thankfully, the feature is able to be turned off, so you don’t have to broadcast all of your whereabouts if you don’t want to.
What do you think of Nearby Friends? Do you plan to use the feature when it rolls out to Android and iOS?