Day after day, Facebook is adding more and more features that we didn’t ask for in hopes to “enhance” our user experience. We’ve covered the Facebook big font status updates here (still can’t be disabled, by the way), which in turn became colored background updates, then enhanced to become a what they’re calling “background posts“. In today’s addition, a new feature called Facebook Find Free WiFi or something along those lines.
For me, I first discovered this feature when I got this notification at 1 Utama. I didn’t even enable Facebook Find Free WiFi feature, and it prompted at my screen.
Curious to know what it does, I tapped on it. It asked me if I want to “enable find WiFi”. My curiosity grew stronger, and enabled the Facebook Find Free WiFi feature to see what’s up. To my surprise, it showed me a whole list of available free WiFis around the vicinity.
Now, it’s not really accurate per se as it showed a rather large area instead of something reachable. It also didn’t take into account the difference in altitude (ala the difference in floor levels).
It’ll only show you which location has free WiFi, but it won’t automatically connect you to that network. You’ll still need to ask them for the password.
What’s interesting is that you can hop on over to the Map view by tapping the button on the top right corner, and browse to other locations to search for free WiFi in that particular area! “Now we can all search for a place to eat that offers free WiFi – all thanks to Facebook!” – I said sarcastically.
Seriously, who thought this is a good feature? I can’t stress this enough – public WiFi sounds good – but you’ll never know what data the host of that free WiFi collects. Packets may be sniffed, data may be collected. Most common technique these days is the use of a “gate”, where you’ll have to give your email address and/or phone number before you can use the free WiFi.
you’ll never know what data the host of that free WiFi collects
Just be mindful of what you’re getting yourself into. Most of the time, free WiFi from the likes of Facebook Find Free WiFi is not always good.
In all seriousness though, I think that the free WiFi is correlated to this feature that’s available for business owners on Facebook. In summary, that feature benefits business owners who have certain hardware that has Facebook WiFi, users can connect to your network and use your WiFi for free – but users will have to check-in at your location first. Seems like a win-win situation.
We’ll definitely keep you updated when we know more about this Facebook Find Free WiFi feature.