Tinder has launched a ‘Face to Face’ video chat feature in the UK, making it easier for Britons to go on dates even if they cannot meet up during the pandemic.
Tinder, which is one of the most popular dating apps, said it was launching the feature globally as new restrictions meant “the world has moved to one focused on bringing people together virtually”.
Users will be able to opt into the feature on a match-by-match basis, or disable the video function at any time.
It said matches would not be alerted once the person they were speaking to had turned the toggle on, and that it would only work if both sides had agreed to opt into the feature. The launch comes after Tinder received “positive feedback from our members who have had early access to it”.
Those using the video feature will have to abide by Tinder’s ground rules, which include a ban on nudity or sexual content, harassment and hate speech, and no content involving minors. Users will be able to send reports after calls end.
Tinder unveiled the launch just days after Facebook doubled down on its push into online dating, rolling out “Facebook Dating” across new regions including the UK and Europe.
Facebook Dating included the video chat option which it said allowed for people to go on “virtual dates” if there were restrictions in place over meet-ups.
Other dating apps have also made steps to promote “virtual dates” including Bumble, which has its own video chat feature, and Hinge, where users can alert others that they’re available for digital dates.
Dating apps have experienced an increase in demand during the pandemic. In August, Tinder-owner Match Group said around 200,000 users had joined the app in the second quarter, taking its average subscribers to 6.2 million, as restrictions made it tougher for people to meet in person.
“As the pandemic took hold, we saw an increase in product usage, particularly among younger users and females,” the company had said.