Online dating has forever changed how couples meet. Since the dawn of the internet, couples have been coming together in droves, and this number has only increased with the invention of dating specific services like Tinder, Match.com and OkCupid.
While most of us know at least one couple who met on Facebook, until now, the social network has not dabbled in the world of online dating. But that’s all about to change with the launch of its new app, appropriately dubbed “Dating”.
The announcement was made at Facebook’s annual development conference in San Fransisco on Monday.
When revealing the company’s plans to making a dating app, Zuckerberg stressed that users’ privacy would be of their utmost concern and that no one would be matched with people they are already friends with.
Using the information on a person’s Facebook profile – such as their likes and interests – the app will match singletons with other people, presumably within the same city, and, if applicable, who they already share mutual friends with.
The app would also connect people who added events that they were attending to their dating profiles.
While Tinder has a reputation for enabling casual hook-ups as well as long-term relationships, Zuckerberg said that Facebook’s dating app would be for “real, long-term relationships, not just hook-ups.”
Even though users are matched through Facebook, they will chat through its Messenger service, but the app’s inbuilt one.
That being said, if a potential match wanted to find you on messenger, we can only presume that it wouldn’t be too hard using information from the app.
“We want Facebook to be somewhere where you can start meaningful relationships,” Zuckerberg continued.
While many people have called into question the likelihood of Facebook users flocking to the new service, the threat it poses to existing platforms like Tinder was reflected in the value of their shares falling considerably after the announcement.
Mandy Ginsberg, the CEO of Match Group, which owns Tinder, said Facebook’s decision to announce the app so soon after its data breach scandal was surprising, “given the amount of personal and sensitive data that comes with this territory.”
At the conference, Zuckerberg showed off an example profile, revealing that it would only show the user’s first name. He also added that there would be no way that the app could post to a person’s newsfeed, so their use of it would remain private.
While making the announcement, Zucerkberg said that some of the highlights he has had as Facebook’s CEO have been hearing about couples who have met through the social media website.
“These are some of the moments that I’m really proud of what we’re doing,” he said. “I know that we’re making a positive difference in people’s lives.”