Photo-messaging app Instagram is reportedly testing a feature that would allow the app to share users’ location data with Facebook. The feature would allow Facebook to target people for advertisements and recommend them relevant content. The geo-tagged data would appear to users in their Facebook profile’s activity log.
“To confirm, we haven’t introduced updates to our location settings. As you know, we often work on ideas that may evolve over time or ultimately not be tested or released. “Instagram does not currently store Location History; we’ll keep people updated with any changes to our location settings in the future,” a Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying by TechCrunch.
Mobile researcher and tipster Jane Manchun Wong located the test-feature in the “Privacy and Security” settings. “Facebook will periodically add your current precise location to your Location History even if you leave the app. You can turn off Location History at any time in your Location Settings on the app.
“When Location History is turned off, Facebook will stop adding new information. It will help you explore what’s around you, get more relevant ads, and helps improve Facebook,” read the feature description on the app. Facebook has also reportedly been testing a redesign of its “Nearby Friends” feature that would replace the list view of friends’ locations with a map.
However, it is still not clear whether or not the photo-messaging platform would roll out the location history sharing feature. “It is something Instagram has prototyped, and that it’s considering launching but hasn’t yet,” the report added.
In September, Facebook-owned Instagram’s co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger abruptly announced their departure from the company.