New Zealand among first to get new Facebook feature

New Zealand is one of the first countries to get access to a new Facebook feature which enables users to buy and sell items with others nearby.

A new 'shop' icon for Marketplace has begun to appear alongside the notifications and messages icon at the bottom of the screen in the social network's mobile app.

The new Facebook feature enables users to buy and sell items with others nearby. Source: Facebook.

Users will see photos of items for sale nearby, as well as being able to search for specific products before messaging the seller for more details.

Those wishing to sell will also be able upload images and descriptions of items, as well as price and location before posting to the Marketplace.

Those wishing to sell will also be able upload images and descriptions of items. Source: Facebook.

Facebook's Mary Ku said: "Facebook is where people connect, and in recent years more people have been using Facebook to connect in another way: buying and selling with each other. This activity started in Facebook Groups and has grown substantially."

The Director of Product Management said more than 450 million people visit buy and sell groups each month — from families in a local neighborhood to collectors around the world.

"Marketplace makes it easy to find new things you’ll love, and find a new home for the things you’re ready to part with. We’ll continue to build new options and features to make this the best experience for people," Ms Ku said.

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It has been suggested the new service could become a rival to established online auction site Trade Me in New Zealand and other e-commerce giants such as eBay.

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Facebook said Marketplace would be rolled out to users over the age of 18 in the UK, US, Australia and New Zealand and would be available on the desktop version of Facebook in the coming months.

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