More than 250 million people use Snapchat’s built-in map to see where their friends are in the world. The map interface was recently upgraded to a main tab inside the app, and today, Snap is adding a new feature that’ll surface popular places it thinks you may want to visit. Snap Map users will also start seeing lists of places, such as bars or restaurants, they’ve either tagged in past posts or favorited to check out.
The “Popular” tab at the bottom center of the Snap Map will show recommendations for places to go based on factors like your current location, friend activity on the map, and the kind of places you’ve saved as favorites. “This new algorithm in our Popular Tab sets Snap Map apart as a highly personalized discovery platform, and is a first-of-its-kind feature for Snapchat, overall,” a Snap spokesperson told The Verge.
With these additions and other recent updates, such as integrations with the restaurant review website The Infatuation and Ticketmaster, Snapchat is turning its map into a unique way to discover the world around you.
And while it’s not a meaningful driver of revenue for Snap yet, advertisers are able to target ads based on the locations of people who have opted into sharing that information — a potentially good way to encourage foot traffic to a local business. Seeing friends on a map alongside info about businesses is also a relatively unique feature that Facebook hasn’t managed to copy. Snap recently reported that is has 293 million daily users, making its user base about 42 percent larger than Twitter’s.