The app is scheduled to be released in March, 2013, and is meant to help users find nearby connections. Facebook created the app to benefit from the portion of its 1 billion users who use mobile devices, and also to sell businesses ads based on a Facebook users’ location and mobile habits.
Many Facebook users have already agreed to the current form of tracking in Facebook’s data-use policy, which states that it will use your location information to tell you and your friends about people and events nearby, or to offer deals that you might be interested in. This also includes relevant ads.
Businesses looking to take advantage of this new service will be able to create customized, location-specific alerts with user information as provided by the app. Studies have already shown that 55% of smartphone users are more likely to visit a retailer's store after receiving location-aware alerts; the new Facebook application should be able to help business catch the eye of users in their specific target-market.
However, before you get excited, it's important to remember that there are already apps such as Find My Friends that constantly track user location for social reasons, though many of these applications tend to lose business due to privacy concerns. It will be interesting to see whether the new Facebook application floats or sinks; though a number of businesses would surely love for it to succeed, it depends entirely upon whether or not users are comfortable enough with the privacy and security settings to adopt the new technology.