August 20th, 2010 | Scott Elkin, Technical Director

You can now immediately let your friends know where you are and what you are doing with Facebook Places.

Facebook just launched Facebook Places, their new location based check-in app.  This will allow you to “check-in” at any location and broadcast your whereabouts directly to your Facebook friends.

It uses a combination of the Bing mapping service on Facebook.com and Google maps on the iPhone to show check-in locations.

Fired straight across the bow of Foursquare, the #1 application in this arena, Facebook will probably overtake Foursquare’s several year lead in a matter of days.  But don’t count out Foursquare. As SAI put it:  “Because of Facebook’s scale, Facebook Places will be bigger than Foursquare. Facebook Photos is bigger than Flickr. This doesn’t mean Foursquare is dead.”

Although Facebook has released an update to their iPhone application, they are still rolling out the ability to actually use it.  When I clicked on the Places icon inside the Facebook application in my home town of Los Angeles, I was met with a message “This feature will be available in your region soon.  Thank you for your patience.”

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