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Snapchat has a new feature called 'Snap Map'—here's how it works

  • Snap Map is available for iPhone users now.
  • You just pinch the screen to activate the Snap Map mode.
  • It'll show you where your friends are Snapping from.

Snapchat launched a new feature called Snap Map on Wednesday.

Snap Map lets you see where your friends are Snapchatting from. It's easy to access and available on the iPhone version of Snapchat now. Here's a quick look at how it works and what you can do with it.

Here's the main Snapchat screen. I just pinch the screen to bring up Snap Map.

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

This is Snap Map. You can see Snaps from all over the world -- just zoom out to view more. There's a heat map where lots of activity is happening.

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

I tapped the Bronx Zoo Snapchat. Look at the animals.

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

A swipe down brings you back to the Snap Map.

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

Not much going on near my colleagues in San Francisco.

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

I can check out the Paris Air Show, though!

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

Looks fun. That's a big plane.

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

If I tap the settings icon I can choose who can view my location, or turn it off entirely.

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Todd Haselton | CNBC

I can see why this might be appealing to Snapchat users who might want to tune in to peek at a live event, like a concert or to see what's happening during a disaster.

On the other hand, I'm not quite sure what this does that other options like Periscope or Facebook's live videos don't offer. In this case, it seems like Snapchat is the one lagging behind other companies.

Perhaps Snapchat's plan is to keep its users inside the app instead of relying on those services, though.

Disclosure: CNBC parent NBCUniversal is an investor in Snap.

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