On Friday, Facebook launched a feature that makes recommending friends of a friend look old-school. The latest version of the social media platform’s mobile app not only suggests similar friends but highlights what you have in common with other users and even places where you may have crossed paths.
The feature, first spotted by TechCrunch, is available through an app update, though it’s unclear if the new feature has rolled out globally. After tapping on another user’s profile, then selecting “friends,” an icon at the top of the screen invites users to “get to know [username’s] friends.” The app will then show you what you have in common with that friend-of-a-friend, including users that are already friends as well as profiles you haven’t yet connected with.
The Facebook things in common include mutual friends, pages liked, events attended, and even places lived or worked. Those details are only displayed when they apply to both users. The feature goes beyond Facebook’s usual friend suggestion by indicating what users might have in common with each other.
The new feature comes shortly after users at Motherboard spotted an option inside Messenger designed to connect friends in person. According to the users that first spotted the change, the feature sends users a notification asking if they would like to “meet up.” According to the report, the responses are private unless both sides say yes and in that case, Messenger automatically connects everyone who agreed. Unlike the new friend suggestion features, the Messenger meetup appears to just be a test of a potential new feature, not a global roll out.
Motherboard suggests the feature feels like Tinder, the dating app, except that it connects people who already know each other and appears to be for larger groups as well as twosomes. It is unclear how the software suggests potential connections, though the users that spotted the feature suggest that artificial intelligence is involved.
Facebook’s “things in common” update appears designed to help make the social network even more social. The update comes after a long string of updates including several changes to Stories, new birthday options, and of course, Facebook’s new look.
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