Facebook has begun rolling out "Find Wi-Fi," a helpful new feature on its app that lets you find locations near you that offer free Wi-Fi hotspots. It was initially launched in a few countries last year and the social media giant has now decided to expand the feature worldwide for both iOS and Android users.
The feature allows users to locate available, public Wi-Fi hotspots that nearby businesses have shared.
"Wherever you are, you can easily map the closest connections when your data connection is weak," Facebook engineering director Alex Himel wrote in a blog post on Friday.
He added that the feature is "not only helpful for people who are traveling or on-the-go, but especially useful in areas where cellular data is scarce."
To find any nearby Wi-Fi hotspots using the feature, here's what you need to do:
- Open the Facebook mobile app on your iOS or Android device
- Click on the "More" tab on the top right corner of the screen
- Scroll down to locate and select the "Find Wi-Fi" tab. You may need to turn the feature on.
- You can now browse and explore the available hotspots from nearby businesses on a map and learn more about those locations as well.
Facebook recently revealed that its solar-powered internet drone Aquila successfully completed its second flight and landing. During its inaugural flight in June last year, the drone suffered a structural failure and had crash-landed.
The crew made numerous changes to the drone, including adding new "spoilers" to the wings and incorporating hundreds of sensors to collect new data. Facebook aims to have these Aquila drones fly up to 90 days at a time and provide internet access within a 60-mile area on the ground in remote areas that do not have Internet access.
"When Aquila is ready, it will be a fleet of solar-powered planes that will beam internet connectivity across the world", Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said. "Today, more than half the world's population - 4 billion people - still can't access the internet. One day, Aquila will help change that."