Got a match? But can’t see your match in-person because of the COVID-19 lockdowns? Well, soon you’ll be able to video call your match right from the application itself, without having to give up your number or any other information. Tinder is working on launching a one-to-one live video sometime in Q2 – by June.
This feature was announced in their Q1 earnings release. The dating application has notice increased activity among users and DAUs (Daily Active Users) and daily Swipes have said to reach an all-time high.
But with lockdowns imposed around the world, meeting in person has become a far-off reality. According to surveys done by the Match Group, the parent company of Tinder and other dating applications like OkCupid, Hinge and Plenty of Fish amongst clothes, users have “demonstrated a strong willingness to video-date”.
To help users connect amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Tinder has made Tinder Passport free which allows users to connect to individuals all around the world.
While the company has already rolled out a similar feature, the parent company is planning to bring the marquee feature to Tinder very soon. While this could be a relief for single people who no longer have avenues like cafes and bars to meet new people, this new feature could also make way for abuse.
The platform has come under scrutiny in the past for abusive interactions on the service. To counter such instances, Tinder has taken steps to reduce the chances of such instances. Primary amongst these is the “Does This Bother You?” feature that automatically detects offensive messages and asks the user if they’d like to block the sender of the message.
But with video chats, it’s not sure how Tinder plans to reduce the scope of abuse since monitoring abuse on video is not a cinch. Either way, we can expect to get more clarity when we see the feature launch a few weeks down the road.
The earnings release also reflects on how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected first-time paying subscriber numbers. According to the release, these subscribers dropped for the first time from February to March but are still higher than last year at this time. Further, the numbers did regain momentum in April.
The introduction of video calling on Tinder is a big move and has the potential to change online dating trends. It’s quite difficult to say what exactly the long-term impact will be but it’ll be interesting to see how popular this new feature remains when lockdowns are lifted around the world.