Well I think until recently, when this kind of relationship was not supposed to exist at least openly, you could refer to a male pal as a חָבֵר, because it was supposed to be the only kind of relation imaginable, but would make a distinction between חֲבֵרָה and יְדִידָה, when speaking about a female friend. But nowadays the waters are muddied and this scenario might be taken into account. So yes, he might.
In English, "my friend" doesn't specify whether you are talking about your only friend or one out of multiple (a friend of mine). Hebrew, it seems, makes a difference here.
In previous sentences, such as the one you linked, it was implied that "my friend" was one out of a group of friends. Therefore, no definite article was used. Here, "החדר" (= "the friend") is the speaker's only new friend, or, in this context quite possibly, his new boyfriend.
Elias, I’m trying to understand your meaning. You say: in previous sentences, such as the one you linked, it was implied that “my friend” was one out of a group of friends. Therefore, no definite article was used. The previous sentence to which Vivek referred was a woman saying “Hi lo khavera sheli, hi raq yedida sheli.” The given translation was: She is not my girlfriend, she is just my friend.
Khavera and yedida both appear and both can translate as “friend”, but I think that you were referring to khavera, the one translated as girlfriend. Usually a person has only one girlfriend at a time, but were you saying that her khavera (girlfriend) was one of a group of her girlfriends?
Usually you can differenciate between for example between הַסֵּ֫פֶר שֶׁלִּי my book and סֵ֫פֶר שֶׁלִּי a book of mine. But חֲבֵרָ belongs to a group of nouns for family members, where you can leave out the article and still mean the specific person. I supposed that the fact that חֲבֵרָה took the attributive adjective טוֹבָה triggered the reuse of the article.
Ingeborg, I’ve sorted out why I was confused by Elias: at one point he said, as you did, that חברה is in a group of nouns such as family members which don’t take the definite article yet still mean the specific person.
Then to the same person, VivekRaman, he said that חברה does not take the definite article because חדרה is one in a group of friends. (If he were talking about חברה and not ידידה)
These two statements seem to contradict each other.
claire, I don’t think that I present you my new friend is correct English.
I present my new friend to you seems to be acceptable English, but if Duolingo marked it wrong, that’s because Duolingo likes you to follow their word order as closely as possible in English.