The market for dating applications has in recent years been led by Tinder. In order to try to counter this dominance, the social network giant Facebook introduced recently, a new functionality, which is known as Facebook Dating, it is a strong competitor to enter this market now.
To help keep the two versions of your Facebook self separate, your Dating profile will only use your first name, and your existing Facebook friends won’t appear as potential matches. Dating will also have a dedicated inbox that, unlike Messenger, does not allow you to send photos or links. You can only send text-based messages when chatting for the first time, which Facebook describes as a safety measure.
Facebook will use a unique algorithm to match you with potential dates, based on “dating preferences, things in common, and mutual friends.” You will also be able to find romantic interests via shared Groups and Events. For example, if you’re attending a concert, you’ll be able to “unlock” your profile, so that potential matches who have said they’re going to the same show can see it. The social network says it’s going to start testing Dating later this year, and that it’s not going to use information from the feature to target ads.
We’re flattered that Facebook is coming into our space—and sees the global opportunity that we do—as Tinder continues to skyrocket. We’re surprised at the timing given the amount of personal and sensitive data that comes with this territory,” Mandy Ginsberg, the CEO of Match Group, said in a statement. “Regardless, we’re going to continue to delight our users through product innovation and relentless focus on relationship success. We understand this category better than anyone. Facebook’s entry will only be invigorating to all of us.”
Come on in. The water’s warm. Their product could be great for US/Russia relationships,” Joey Levin, the CEO of IAC, Match Group’s parent company, added. Bumble, too, described itself as “thrilled” at the news, suggesting in a statement that “perhaps Bumble and Facebook can join forces.”
They have a point: Dating apps will likely still have their own appeal. Historically, certain dating services have drawn specific crowds. Bumble can continue to offer a specific community, or unique features, like the ability for women to exclusively approach men first. Conversely, everyone is on Facebook, with all the good and bad that an infinite dating pool contains.
In many ways Dating makes perfect sense for Facebook. Instead of allowing third-party apps to move user data to their own ecosystems, the social network is instead building its own. It’s also a nod to Facebook’s earliest days. After all, Zuckerberg’s company started out as FaceMash, a “hot or not” game for Harvard students. It worked not unlike the experience of swiping through Tinder profiles does today.
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