Facebook Acquires Social Discovery App, ‘Glancee’

May 5, 2012

Facebook has just made its second big acquisition of 2012, picking up a social location application that you probably haven’t heard of outside of Silicon Valley land.

Glancee, the iOS and Android application, allowed users to find new friends based on their current locations. We say this in past tense, for the app can no longer be found on either the Android Market or Apple’s App Store.

Fire up the app, and you could use Glancee to generate a list of nearby Glancee users and discover what friends or interests you both have in common. You could then add the to-be-pal as a “Favorite” user – which sounds kind of like friendly stalking, but not really – or strike up an online chat to determine whether you could eventually seal the friendship deal in real life.

Some of the benefits of Glancee – at least, compared to its larger competitor Highlight, which doesn’t appear to have been for sale – include the fact that the app’s cross-platform (Highlight is currently iOS exclusive). Additionally, Glancee doesn’t show the precise location of nearby users on a giant map – a pro for Highlight if you’re actually looking for people to chat with in a real-world environment, but a con for everyone else who doesn’t want to feel as if they’re being stalked through a social application.

As mentioned, Highlight is technically the more-used of the ambient location social applications. According to TechCrunch’s Alexia Tsotsis, it appears as if Highlight is roughly three times larger than Glancee: Approximately 9,000 new users join Highlight each day to Glancee’s 3,000.

Facebook didn’t disclose how much it paid for Glancee, including the ratio of straight-up cash versus shares in the big social network, which could help eagle-eyed Facebook valuation watchers pin down an up-to-date number for the worth of a single share of Facebook’s stock – a hot topic as we enter the supposed month of Facebook’s big IPO.

“We are thrilled to confirm that Facebook has acquired Glancee. The acquisition closed today. We can’t wait for co-founders Andrea, Alberto, and Gabriel to join the Facebook team to work on products that help people discover new places and share them with friends,” Facebook representatives said via statement.

And you can expect the Facebook acquisitions to keep on coming.

“Expect us to invest heavily in our mobile presence, even if mobile monetization is uncertain and will take time,” said Facebook CFO David Ebersman in a video located on Facebook’s “Investment Roadshow Presentation” website, launched in advance of the company’s IPO.