The New York Times reports that Facebook is getting ready to allow location sharing between friends.
The information was given to The New York Times by unnamed sources who have not yet been authorised to talk about the upcoming feature.
It is likely that Facebook may announce this feature at f8, their yearly developer conference, which is due to be held next month.
However, in anticipation of protests by the advocates of user privacy, Facebook also said, “If we offer a service that supports this type of local sharing, we will present you with an opt-in choice of whether you want to participate.”
It is believed that Facebook has been working on this location sharing feature for almost a year now. However, when questioned about the service, official spokeswoman, Meredith Chin said, “We’re constantly experimenting with new things around here, but we don’t have any details to share right now.”
The location sharing feature will supposedly be offered directly by Facebook to its users and will also have a set of software tools for developers to offer location-based services.
The fact that 50% of Facebook users log in at least once a day and 100 million users (25%) use their mobile phones to do so, makes location sharing an important feature for Facebook.
While this feature will give competition to smaller location-based networks like Foursquare and Loopt, it is more likely to compete with Google for a share of the revenue from the small business local advertising sector.