The moment some budding entrepreneur had the lightbulb moment of joining two of society’s favorite pastimes – looking for love and web surfing – online dating has gone from strength to strength. There are now thousands of dating outlets catering to global memberships of many millions. One reason for their ongoing success is the way these sites have always embraced technological innovation. It would be interesting to consider the role technology might play in dating sites of the future.
When dating services first went live, they relied on nothing more complicated than providing digital mailboxes where prospective dates could leave messages for each other. This new communication channels also affected an LGBT community because as these outlets have progressed, a range of new communication channels has become available, covering every possible base, from bi chat online to video chatting for bi-curious individuals. Websites are likely to offer ever-handier methods for their members to touch base, with international chat becoming more popular. Anyone who has ever fancied the idea of meeting up with a previously niche demographic, will be able to use exciting tech innovations to introduce themselves.
Currently, algorithms exist that can scan through the databases on dating sites, flagging up those members who share common interests. As time moves on, these computer programs are set to be even more sophisticated. Taking the previous example by way of illustration. Say a site user makes a habit of searching for bisexual Hispanic singles and interacting with individuals fitting that description. Algorithms might recognise this interest, and then offer suggestions for Hispanic restaurants or Latino dancing classes you might like to consider booking for your first date. Expect to be bombarded with tasty menus and nearby Salsa studios.
AI is another area where there are liable to be exciting trends. The software might recognise objects in the background of profile photos, such as a guitar resting against the wall, or a hill forming the backdrop. AI will identify that this individual is, respectively, a musician, or enjoys outdoor pursuits. People who have specified they are keen on either of these hobbies can be steered towards the person in question. As in any other industry, AI within dating is being utilized to eliminate a lot of unnecessary time-wasting.
Many people are drawn to the convenience of Internet dating. Rather than having to plough through copious user profiles, they might well prefer the shortcut of being able to dismiss unlikely candidates for romance without hesitation. This is readily achieved by presenting profile photos – the first and most obvious representation of the person seeking a relationship – and then providing the observer with the option to either ‘swipe right’ to indicate interest, or ‘swipe left’ to instantly dismiss them. Some site users can become particularly ‘gung ho’ and ‘trigger happy’ as they plough through the list of potential partners. But others will be far more discerning, taking the opportunity to study the single’s dating profile.
A lot of contemporary dating outlets are geared towards ‘no strings attached’ encounters, and get-togethers that can be arranged with minimal effort. The easiest way for site users to engineer a liaison is for geo-location software to utilize similar software to SatNavs and pinpoint any member’s location in real-time. If you happen to be near that vicinity, then you can introduce yourself, and take things from there. If it turns out there are sparks of desire, then this ‘accidental rendezvous’ could become the basis for something far more enjoyable. Always exercise a degree of caution when bumping into relative strangers, but in the majority of cases, the chemistry will be instant.