Stepping out of the home is no longer an option for people around the world. So, what does this mean for all the singletons out there who had an active dating life. Well, to many all this social distancing amid the Covid-19 lockdown is giving them an opportunity to make more connections on dating and community apps. Delhi-based business analyst Aditya Arora, 27, by his own admission loves it. So does Pritam Singh, 40, a Mumbai-based IT professional.
“Anyway, in earlier times, after a day or two of casual conversations, we would decide to catch up. But now, since we’re homebound, conversations have got better,” Singh shares.
Sitting in the confines of his home in Kerala, in between working from home, Ganesh, 25, academic writer, too is keeping himself busy by swiping left and right on his phone, besides chatting with interesting, like-minded people.
Even Mahua Ghosh, 28, a teacher, admits, “There’s this guy I really liked, he too had similar feeling. But we couldn’t just talk much given our crazy schedule. Now, we speak almost every day.”
Well, dating apps too are obviously content with this influx in users. Sumesh Menon, CEO & Co-founder Woo, shares that even though it’s just the initial days of the lockdown, “if we compare month on month averages, we are seeing a 39% increase in matches and 71% increase in messaging. People are matching more, but more intuitively they are talking more on the app.”
Tinder spokesperson also adds how “conversation length was up anywhere from 10 – 30% as compared to February in places like Europe and SEA”.
Ariel Charytan, CEO, OkCupid adds another interesting side, “There’s actually been over 50 million intro messages sent across the world on OkCupid over the last month among daters connecting for the first time.”
A Bumble spokesperson shares that people are using their “features like voice call and video chat that allow for an even deeper connection without having to meet in public, or share your phone number or email”.
But it seems all these aren’t enough. Nothing can beat the emotional exchange of meeting someone in person.
Shefali Varma, 39, a private tutor, agrees, “It’s become very repetitive and boring to just chat. A lot of friends I know have uninstalled their dating apps and some who will do that soon. We can’t just talk and not meet.”
“A lot of conversations are happening, engagement had gone up to twice what it was before but for how long?,” says Snehil Khanor, CO- Founder & CEO, TrulyMadly, adding, “People would like to move beyond, messages, calls and video-calls. While we’ve made two of our paid features free now and we can see users are lapping up the opportunity, but I really don’t know about the future. But, yes we’re prepared.”
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