In a quest to constantly provide its users with new features, Meta‘s Instagram keeps testing out new ideas. And the latest feature likely to come out on the social media platform is “Friend Map“. After it was first spotted in testing back in November, Instagram has now confirmed that it is indeed working on a new “Friend Map” display in the app, which is similar to Snap Inc.’s Snap Map.

App researcher Alessandro Paluzzi posted example screens on Threads showcasing a prototype version of Instagram’s Friend Map. The feature will enable your friends to see where you are and where you’ve been, with all posts and Stories tagged with a location added to the map display. The company says the feature is an internal prototype and is not being tested externally. 

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Instagram seems to be following its trend of adopting popular features from other platforms, similar to the integration of Snapchat’s Stories functionality in 2016. The new ‘Friend Map‘ Insta feature is also close to Apple‘s “Find My” feature which lets users see where their friends and family are currently located.

With ‘Friend Map‘, Instagram would be giving its users another reason to spend more time on its app and less on other companies’ services. But how do we feel about this? Will this be a death of privacy? Will it result in obsessive behaviours where a creepy follower could end up stalking you? What it will create though is a feeling of FOMO.

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Let’s dissect the new feature:

Privacy and Security

One of the key concerns surrounding the Friend Map feature is privacy and security. Instagram seems to be addressing these concerns by incorporating privacy controls into the feature. Users will have the option to choose who can view their location. The settings will include options like sharing with followers, with Close Friends, or with no one at all. Moreover, it will also have end-to-end encryption for location data and a “Ghost Mode” setting to hide the last active location to bolster user privacy and security.


Beyond location sharing, Friend Map might introduce a new feature called “Notes,” allowing users to leave short messages for others to see on the map. This functionality opens up possibilities for sharing information about interesting places or events with friends, further enriching the user experience.

Potential Impact

With the rise of platforms like Instagram and TikTok for discovering new places, Instagram is positioning itself as a comprehensive social platform with diverse functionalities. However, it remains to be seen how users will respond to this feature and whether it will have a significant impact on user engagement within the app.

While Instagram’s Friend Map feature is still in the early stages of development, it represents a significant step towards providing users with new ways to connect and engage within the app. As Instagram continues to explore innovative features and functionalities, it’s essential for the platform to prioritize user privacy and security to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all users.