Since Viziononline last mentioned Facebook places – that geolocation tool that lets users ‘sign in’ or share their location from their GPS mobile phone with their Facebook page – it has launched in the UK as we predicted.
So how does it work? First you need a Facebook account, and a phone like an iphone with your Facebook app on it. The phone knows where you are, and you inform Facebook to ‘tag’ your location as often as you want. A post then appears in your account, showing your friends (or the world depending on your privacy settings), with a little map.
Before Facebook places came to the UK, us Brit early adopters did have Foursquare to play with. The same type of service, same end result, but requiring a Foursquare plugin for your smartphone and a Foursquare account.
How many people will use it? Well at the Notting Hill Carnival, Vizion Online can report a mere 120-odd Foursquare users signed in at any one time on either day – to an event that drew crowds of millions!
Some months later, Martin McNulty, of Forward 3D in the UK says: “Facebook Places is likely to experience a slow rate of adoption among UK audiences on its launch as people try to uncover its practical value. However, as early technology adopters begin experimenting with the technology and showing others how it can be used, its growth rate is sure to rapidly increase.
“Although many of the older generation are likely to be sceptical at first about the safety aspects of announcing your location to the digital world, younger and more experimental users, will be keen to get to grips with this new tool and are less likely to let fear stand in their way.”
One thing’s for sure; the internet can be a lonely place for us early adopters!