Has Facebook gone too far this time with this new feature?

Facebook keeps on rolling out new features, but are they always good ones?

Business Insider Australia reports the social media giant launched a new feature called “Nearby Friends” yesterday which shares your location with friends.

The feature uses the geolocation technology in smartphones and sends out occasional notifications to tell them where you are.

The system uses GPS and triangulation between mobile phone towers to obtain your location and then produces a map with all your friends’ locations.

On the plus side it will mean you can catch up with friends when you happen to be in their vicinity. On the downside, it is a loss of privacy because once you opt in it will not switch off automatically, although it does send out regular “pushes” to let you know it is on.

However, you can set your location using a timer that switches off the app after a certain period and you can also restrict it just to certain Facebook friends, which should reduce the chances of it being misused.

Obviously both you and your friends have to have the app switched on for it to work.

To turn Nearby Friends on or off on an iPhone or Android:

1. Tap More

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2. Tap Nearby Friends

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3. Tap  and then you may be asked to change your location settings to turn on Nearby Friends. Once your location is able to be accessed, you can turn Nearby Friends on.

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4. Tap to turn Nearby Friends on or off

Note: Turning on Nearby Friends also turns on Location History. When Location History is on, Facebook builds a history of your precise location, even if you leave the app.

Me? I’m undecided about it. Do I really want my friends knowing where I am? Um . . . maybe not, but then again it would be nice to catch up for the odd impromptu cuppa with someone. 

What about you? Do you think it is an invasion of privacy will you use the new app? Tell us your opinion.

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