(Pocket-lint) – Tinder is launching a test of a new video chat feature, called Face to Face, which Tinder’s parent company, Match, recently announced.
Face to Face basically allows Tinder matches to go on virtual dates, all within the Tinder mobile app. Both users have to opt in to use the feature, however.
Match is testing Face to Face with some users in select worldwide markets, according to TechCrunch and The Verge. Currently, those markets include Virginia, Illinois, Georgia, and Colorado, as well as Brazil, Australia, Spain, Italy, France, Vietnam, Indonesia, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Peru, and Chile.
Once two Tinder users have matched and are chatting, they can start a video chat simply by tapping the new video icon, which won’t be enabled until both have opted in. Then, after both users toggle on video, they have to agree whether the calls should be free of nudity and stay clean and so on. Match said, after the call, a pop-up will ask whether they would go Face to Face again, and that users will also see an option to report the other person, if needed.
Match said it’s tested video before, but it wasn’t until the pandemic that a real want for such a feature emerged.
The company, which owns other dating platforms such as Hinge, OK Cupid, and Plenty of Fish, told investors that 70 per cent of Hinge users reported that they’re open to a video date. Its engineering teams then worked quickly to deploy one-to-one video chat capabilities in many of its platforms, including on Tinder.
Tinder matches who aren’t ready to meet in person – whether it’s because of COVID-19 or they’re just taking things slow – can easily turn to other apps, such as Snapchat, to keep in touch, and many do. But, with Face to Face, Match is clearly attempting to keep matches chatting inside Tinder.
Writing by Maggie Tillman.