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Facebook Places Goes Live On The iPhone. Check-In While It’s Hot (If You Can) At Facebook’s Places event earlier tonight, they noted that their iPhone app would be updated tonight with the new check-in functionality.

Facebook Places Goes Live On The iPhone. Check-In While It’s Hot (If You Can)

Sure enough, here it is. Though the App Store update alert hasn’t kicked in yet, if you go to the actual page and redownload it, it should be the latest version (version 3.2). As you can see, the new Places area is front and center in the app. Clicking on it brings up a list of your friends who have recently checked in to various places. Clicking on those friends shows more details about the place they are at. Friend check-ins are sorted by those friends who are nearby and those who are elsewhere. One thing that’s oddly tricky is actually checking-in yourself. Still, on the touch.facebook.com version of the site the functionality is working and seems much more obvious. You’ll also notice that Facebook has changed the Inbox icon on their new app. Update 3: And now version 3.2.1 is out with bug fixes. Live From Facebook’s Location Event (Video Stream) We’re at Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, where the social network is finally unveiling its much-anticipated location feature, which will be called Places.

Live From Facebook’s Location Event (Video Stream)

We’ve already published the first screenshots of the new feature, but we’re about to get the full rundown on how it works and who Facebook is partnering with. The company has invited dozens of press to the event (it even shuttled some of them down from San Francisco), and it’s clear that it’s treating this as a very big deal. I’m liveblogging my notes from the event below. pic of zuck CEO Mark Zuckerberg has taken the stage. “This will be a fun and interesting summer, we have a lot of new products coming out.” We knew it was ready to go. Three purposes for this: Help you share where you are. Showing video of the feature. Michael Sharon, the product manager for Places, has taken the stage.

Getting started: launching it on touch.facebook.com and in a brand new iPhone app being released later tonight. Tap Checkin button. ‘Why tagging’. Facebook Has Been Working On This Location Feature For 8 Months. Today at an event at their headquarters in Palo Alto, CA, Facebook unveiled their new Places product — their location/check-in solution.

Facebook Has Been Working On This Location Feature For 8 Months

Obviously, their entry in this space has been rumored for a long time — a very long time. But during the Q&A session, someone asked how long Facebook has actually been working on this Places product. Since December, one of the engineers in charge of the product replied. But he also revealed that there have been other “skunkworks” projects internally at Facebook surrounding location long before that. The past 8 months have just been specifically focused on what is now called Places. Zuckerberg specifically called out the tagging aspect of the product as being unique. “There was so much to do before we launched this,” Zuckerberg said with a smile on his face. When asked about checking-in to watching television shows or the like, Zuckerberg joked, “there’s a lot of stuff we’re not doing.” Facebook Wants Advertisers To Help Build Out Its Directory of Places.

As we heard tonight, Facebook has officially launched Places, the social network’s location-based platform.

Facebook Wants Advertisers To Help Build Out Its Directory of Places

We know what Places will mean for Facebook users. Users will be able to check-in to Places (created by both people and businesses) via the web or through mobile apps. And the feature has an API so partners like Foursquare, Gowalla, Yelp and Booyah can allow their users to check-in to Facebook’s places. But what does this mean for businesses? Interestingly, Facebook seems to actively be targeting advertisers on the network. Facebook is wasting no time encouraging advertisers to start registering their businesses.

Places creates a presence for your business’s physical store locations- encouraging your customers to share that they’ve visited your business by “checking in” to your Place. Of course, many advertisers and businesses may be confused about the need for both a Page and a Place. Of course, the race to create a widespread directory of places is already full of competitors. The Implications Of Facebook's "Places" Foursquare’s Dennis Crowley: Still deciding on Facebook Places. With Facebook’s announcement of a check-in feature dubbed Facebook Places, we’re all wondering how it will affect location-based services like Foursquare.

Foursquare’s Dennis Crowley: Still deciding on Facebook Places

So I went ahead and asked founder and chief executive Dennis Crowley. While Foursquare had a presence at the Facebook announcement, it wasn’t very clear what exactly the two companies would be doing together. Other location-based games, like Gowalla and Booyah, were a bit more vocal claiming integrations with Facebook. The reason for the vagueness? Crowley said that Foursquare hasn’t committed to anything because the team still needs to try out the service. While Crowley admits that they knew Facebook would eventually do something around location, thinking it would happen at this year’s SXSW (South by South West conference), he isn’t worried about the social network being competition. Crowley also said that this feature launch validates what his company has been working on for three years.

Facebook Partnering With Gowalla And Foursquare For Places. Today at an event in Palo Alto, CA, Facebook unveiled its new Places product — essentially their check-in utility.

Facebook Partnering With Gowalla And Foursquare For Places

Obviously, there has been a lot of talk about what this means for the current players like Foursquare and Gowalla. Well, Facebook is partnering with both of those guys. We hinted at this possibility a couple days ago. Representatives from both Gowalla and Foursquare were invited to take the stage at the event to talk about how they plan to leverage Facebook’s new Places API. Both will allow you to check-in and publish the data to your Facebook feed. Facebook Punks Foursquare, Gets Them To Announce Nothing. I love how companies “cooperate” in the tech industry.

Facebook Punks Foursquare, Gets Them To Announce Nothing

Twitter recently “helped” out TweetMeme by giving them another business to focus on. Facebook has now “helped” out Foursquare by making them wonder what’s next. They also welcomed the company up on stage to announce that they would … GASP … consider what to do with Facebook Places! Apparently Foursquare will eventually have Facebook integration, however right now they are working on their own product roadmap and don’t have the resources to integrate.

Contrast this with Booyah who’s already launching a new application, called InCrowd, on the back of Facebook’s Places API. Foursquare happened to be the highest profile company to speak at the event because they were the most at risk of being damaged by Facebook Places. Granted, Foursquare users may not run for the door right away, but it’s only a matter of time. Facebook Places Plays Nice with Yelp, Foursquare, Gowalla and Booyah. Facebook just launched Places for the United States.

Facebook Places Plays Nice with Yelp, Foursquare, Gowalla and Booyah

In short, it is a location check-in platform. They launched with four partners (Foursquare, Gowalla, Yelp and Booyah) all of whom are federating check-ins in some way. The Places API is currently read-only, while the Write & Search API are in closed beta. Facebook Places was created with three goals: Helping people share where they are Seeing who else is around you Seeing what’s going on around you The launch will be available via a new iPhone app and the Facebook mobile site (requires a browser with HTML5 and geolocation). Developer documentation is already live at developers.facebook.com.

Facebook took great pains to not be the big bad during the launch of Places. Gowalla — When you check-in you get a Passport stamp (as normal). Martin May, a founder of location check-in service Brightkite, summed it up with a tweet: “So far, FB Places is pretty much ‘been there, done that’ … of course at FB size.” Chris dixon: will be interesting to see...