New Instagram feature: what is Friend Map and how it works

Elizabeth Smith

Organizing a spontaneous outing with friends has never been so simple. Thanks to the Friend Map feature – soon available on Instagram – you can know the location of your contacts in real time.

Recently introduced by Instagram, “Friend Map” is a new feature designed to allow users to share their real-time location with followers.

This tool, inspired by Snapchat’s already existing “Snap Map“, offers users the possibility of viewing the location of their friends on the map, naturally only if they want it. Let’s see what “Friend Map” is and how it will work in detail.

What is Instagram Friend Map?

Instagram’s “Friend Map” is a new feature introduced by the social media platform that allows users to share their real-time location with followers.

Inspired by Snapchat’s existing “Snap Map”, this feature allows users to view the locations of their friends on the map, subject to their consent.

Users will then have the opportunity to decide whether to share their location with all followers or only with a selected group of “close friends” – as already happens with Instagram posts and stories. They can also choose not to share their location at all. Or to activate “Ghost Mode” to hide only their last active location.

Furthermore, the “Friend Map” shows additional information about the locations where users are located, thus providing a more complete overview of the activity and interests of people in their network of contacts.

How does Friend Map work on Instagram?

Although Friend Map is currently still in the rollout phase and is therefore not available on devices outside the United States, we can speculate on how it might work in the future. In particular:

  • users will be able to activate the Friend Map from their Instagram profile settings;
  • once activated, users will have the option to decide whether to share their location with all followers or only with a selected group of “close friends”;
  • Instagram will offer several privacy options to control location sharing. Users will be able to choose not to share their location at all, to hide it only from some users or to activate “Ghost Mode”, which will only hide the last active location;
  • users will be able to view the map on their home page or in a special section of the app, where they will be able to see the location of their friends in real time;
  • users will have the ability to change their location sharing settings at any time from their profile settings.

Friend Map on Instagram will therefore offer users the ability to share their location and view the location of their friends on the map, sometimes simplifying hours and hours of group chats to be able to organize an outing with friends.

However, it is important to consider the privacy and information management implications of using a location-based feature. Letting the world know where you are and who you are with may not be the revolutionary idea it seems.

Read also: Threads vs Instagram, what are the differences?

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