While Snapchat may be the original proprietor of sharing data, before the likes of Instagram began copying its ideas. Now, to get a leg up on its competitors by expanding its location sharing features.
TechCrunch reported that Snapchat is rolling out a new Send and Request location feature that allows friends to see your real-time always updating location, or request their location.
Snap Map launched last June and offered users the option to share your location with specific friends rather than all of them. However, a lot of users still felt anxious about this feature and tended to stay in Ghost Mode to keep their location private.
Send and Request adds to previous Snapchat location features, but carries a new focus for privacy and probably comes at the right time considering the app has recently been criticized for lacking privacy controls. TechCrunch confirmed that this feature will start rolling out to both iOS and Android users over the next few weeks.
Now when you long-press on a friend’s name or hit the three-line hamburger button on a chat thread, you’ll get the option to Send Location or Request location. It only works with bi-directional friends, so you can’t ask for the spot of your favorite Snap star if they don’t follow you back, and you can turn off getting requests in your settings if people are spamming you.
Location data only shows up to 8 hours since you last opened the app and you’ll still have your ability to stop sharing your data at any time. Snapchat is hoping this will prompt more users to be active on Snap Map. It also might be their best chance at differentiating between current competitors, although it might only be a matter of time before we see Insta Map.