San Francisco: In a move that will help women and kids connect with their families and friends as they travel, Facebook-owned WhatsApp has introduced "Live Location" feature.
As such, users will be able to share their location in real time with friends on the contact list, a popular feature borrowed from its parent company Facebook, according to IT news website Tech Crunch.
The end-to-end encrypted feature lets people control who they share with and for how long.
To stop sharing "Live Location", users can turn it off or let the timer simply expire.
"The Live Location feature in WhatsApp makes women feel confident about sharing their real-time location or a journey with someone close, so that it can be tracked for a purpose and privately," said Sohini Bhattacharya, CEO of Breakthrough, a non-profit organisation, in a statement on Wednesday.
Live Location sharing is being made available on both Android and iPhone.
The feature is yet to be rolled out in UAE but expected to made available in the coming weeks.
This feature will prove to be extremely useful during disasters and crisis situations, as help and relief can be provided more effectively and quickly.
"For women, in unsafe and dangerous situations, it may be a helpful tool for police officials and families, as real-time locations can be shared easily in WhatsApp," said Ranjana Kumari from Centre for Social Research.
Live Location: How to use
The feature, called Live Location, will be available from Tuesday, October 17, 2017
It is coming to both the iOS and Android versions of WhatsApp.
Facebook officially rolled out temporary location sharing in Messenger in May, having experimented with the idea in different formats within Messenger and the main Facebook app for years.
To use Live Location, open a chat with a person or group.
Under “Location” in the attach button, tap “Share Live Location.”
You can set a timer for how long you want to share your location, and everyone you’ve chosen to send your location to can see where you are on a map in real time.
The feature also works if multiple people share locations simultaneously, as people’s icons will then appear on the same map.