Ready to focus on the chat? (Picture: Tinder/Getty)
Swipe, swipe, swipe.
It’s easy to become almost robotic in your swiping habits – does he have good hair? Check. Over 6ft? Check.
Taking a moment to really consider a person can get lost on dating apps, despite developers’ efforts to make the nature of digital dating more authentic.
The truth is, sometimes you just can’t get a feel for someone going off of photos and a witty bio alone.
To mark the OG dating app’s 10 year anniversary, Tinder has launched a blind dating feature in answer to this issue.
Somewhat old school, blind dates aren’t so common anymore – so Tinder is giving the 90s concept a Gen Z-suitable, digital update and revival.
Available from now in the US and launching at any moment in other locations, the new feature allows single people to connect with others in a chat, with the focus being on personality and ‘banter’, before the person’s appearance is revealed.
Tinder will match people with those they think will suit, based on a set of questions. From there, it’s up to people to talk.
The brand says the Fast Chat: Blind Date feature is responding to a ‘call for nostalgia and authentic connections’.
Their research shows that 21% of Gen Z Brits – the age group most on Tinder – say they’d love the old concept of blind dating to become more popular and accessible again.
The culture of friends setting other friends up in a ‘blind’ way isn’t so common these days, thank so to quick Instagram and Facebook stalks.
Ultimately, 55% haven’t experienced a blind date, but would go on one.
Now, users can head to Explore in the app to chat and form an impression on someone before being able to view their profile.
The Tinder team explain: ‘Tinder will match you with someone else, based on your preferences but your chat is the only thing in the spotlight.
Looks come last (Picture: Tinder)
‘Only if you both decide to match after chatting for a short period of time, are your full profiles revealed.’
It’ll be the answer, the app hopes, to the 41% of Gen Z survey takers who don’t know how to set up a blind date.
Nearly half believe dating in this way could mean they give someone they’d typically overlook a chance, branching outside of their usual type.
The chat function is a low pressure way to ‘meet’ new people and make connections.
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In early testing, people who used the Blind Date feature made 40% more matches than those using another Fast Chat feature with visible profiles.
Kyle Miller, VP of Product Innovation at Tinder says: ‘We’ve all seen the mix of anticipation and excitement going on a blind date brought some of our favorite movie or TV characters, and we wanted to recreate that experience for today’s generation with the Blind Date feature.
‘There’s something really special about letting conversation introduce someone’s personality, without the preconceptions that can be made from photos.
‘The new Blind Date experience brings a surprisingly fun, banter-based way to interact and create connections that’s all new to Tinder.’
How Blind Date works
Users will answer a short series of icebreaker questions and be paired with one another based on commonalities.
They’ll enter a timed chat, not knowing any details about the person on the other side of the screen aside from their answers to multiple-choice prompts such as, ‘It’s OK to wear a shirt ____ times without washing it’ and ‘I put ketchup on____’.
When the timer runs out, they can Like the other’s profile, which will be revealed if there is a match, or they can choose to get paired with someone new.
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