WhatsApp, which rapidly gained popularity and has more than a billion users, already gave the option of sharing your current location with other users.
Need someone to know you’ve reached home safely or arrived at a meeting on time? No longer do you need to call or text them. Facebook-owned messaging service, WhatsApp has launched a new feature: Live Location sharing.
“Live Location is available on both Android and iPhone and will be rolling out in the app in the coming weeks,” says a WhatsApp blog post.
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WhatsApp, which rapidly gained popularity and has more than a billion users, already gave the option of sharing your current location with other users. However, this is a onetime share, and doesn’t change when you move away from the location, unless you share your current location again.
WhatsApp’s Live Location sharing is dynamic, sending real-time updates of your location, even when the app is running in the background. You can choose whom you wish to share your location with, and that person can view your location in real time, on a map.
You can also choose for how long that person can view these updates. You can opt to stop sharing any time. The app also has a Live Location timer, so that you don’t need to manually stop sharing your location.
Open a chat with a person or a group you wish to share your location with. Locate the “Attach” icon in the text box (where the message is displayed when you type something). Touching the “Attach” icon brings up options, including Camera, Document, Gallery, etc. Among these, you’ll be able to see a new option called “Share Live Location.” When you choose this, you will be prompted to select the duration for which you wish to share. You also have the option of adding a comment. A tap will send your details.
People who own iPhones have a Plus icon, which includes the Share Live Location feature.
The person or everyone in the group will be able to see your location real time, on a map. For groups, more than one person can share Live Location. All these locations will show up on the same map.
If someone shares their live location with you, the “View Live Location” option will take you to a map to view the current location of that person real time. If more than one person shares their live locations with you, the map will show you all the locations simultaneously. Switching to the Satellite or Terrain view on the map will allow you to see live traffic data as well, helping you estimate the time it would take the person to reach the destination.
The option of sharing the onetime, static location will not be removed and one can use it as before.
Do not use Live Location sharing if you’re running late for an appointment, and you’re about to text people “reaching in 5” when you’ve only just getting out of your home!
WhatsApp has been working on adding new features to the app, including the introduction of verified business accounts.