Facebook axes FIVE features including location tracking in major overhaul of services

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Facebook has axed five of its features in a major overhaul of its services as the social media giant moves to take an axe to poorly performing items.

Meta, Facebook's parent company, confirmed they will be axing several services including background location, location history, weather alerts, podcasts and nearby friends, which will be unavailable after May 31.

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The social media giant is cutting the five services due to “low usage” after sending a notification to users who have previously used the services.

Podcasts will no longer be available on Facebook, a year after they launched, as the company develops other services.

Global Tech News Daily

The company said it will stop with its short-form audio product Soundbites and will axe its central audio hub.

Facebook axes five features including location tracking in major overhaul of services

Global Tech News Daily

The US social networking giant is cutting back the five services due to “low usage” ( Image: SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Facebook confirmed information shared with the company for location history and background location will stop being collected at the end of this month.

According to the company's data policy, users will still have their data location collected for other services.

However, to view or delete existing location history on Facebook, users can download and access their information before August 1 – after this date existing history information will be automatically deleted.

Facebook spokesperson Emil Vazquez told The Verge : “While we’re deprecating some location-based features on Facebook due to low usage, people can still use Location Services to manage how their location information is collected and used.”

Facebook axes five features including location tracking in major overhaul of services

Facebook users will no longer have access to Nearby Friends ( Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Below are the five services Facebook will be getting rid of.

Podcasts

Just last April, Facebook confirmed they would be entering the ever-expanding and popular podcast market but, after a year, the company has decided to axe podcasts.

The company will stop users adding podcasts to the site after they sent a notification informing users of the planned changes.

Background location

After being criticised for its data privacy, Facebook will stop users letting the social networking giant accessing their location when they're not on the Facebook app. Users can now turn this off but this will no longer be a feature after May 31.

Location history

The social network giant has a digital map tied to the user's location history on their phone. This tracks their location history, with users able to access this information at any time.

Each time a user is logged into Facebook, and the location history is on, the company tracks your current location – but this feature will now disappear.

Weather alerts

Weather alerts, which inform users of the weather in their local area, will be no longer be available.

Facebook said it will stop recording location data in the background – which means the end of weather alerts on the site.

Nearby friends

The nearby friends feature will no longer be available after May 31 as Facebook axes the feature which allowed social media users and their friends to share their locations with each other.

When users turned on Nearby Friends, the feature turned on Location history, which allowed users and their friends to share locations with each other. And, when users turn on Nearby Friends, they are are also turning on Location history.

Location history must be turned on for some location features, such as Nearby Friends, to work on Facebook.

This automatically uses your location to create a map of places you have visited.

However, users have until August 1 to download and access their data – after this date the data collected will be deleted automatically.

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