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Is Video a New Chat? The Future of Online Video Dating
August 13, 2021

Is Video a New Chat? The Future of Online Video Dating

Dating these days takes place both in person and online. Thousands upon thousands of individuals around the globe have chosen to participate in this endeavor to find their life partners. Globally, newly registered profiles in dating sites have risen to 82% following the prohibitions of face-to-face meet-ups. The restrictions resulted in the drastic shift of users to video dating sites as a way to get a quick fix of romance.

This begs the question, how has dating and the search for an intimate partner transitioned from the real world and into the online universe? 

Behind the Curtains: Dating Then and Now

To answer the question above, let’s take a trip back to the year 1967. Jeff Ullman escorted multiple individuals in and out of a room filled with chairs, a camera crew, and a few videotapes stored within. Each of the members of the group Ullman escorted in and out of the room was interviewed about their personality and what they would want in their respective life partners.

Thus, Great Expectations came into existence. It showcased the profoundness of each person’s personality that makes them appealing. Little by little, it developed a foundation for the present-day dating experience. The circumstances of meeting people from different places was made easy thanks to the continuous technological advances through the years. Each of the well-known dating apps and sites today has borrowed the framework of Great Expectations, as exhibited by the refined process of browsing your future partner. Now, you can date people from different parts of the globe with different time zones with a swipe of a finger.

Similar to user preferences, online dating has also taken several formats, with video call dating as the current and highly in-demand variation.

What makes it a sought-after and crowd-pleasing medium for meeting potential mates? 

Why Now: Dating through the Screen

Chatting and voice calls are some of the popular forms of meeting new people for companionship or romantic relations. However, since the pandemic happened, people looking for love are now turning to a new format for dating.

Pre-Pandemic, people would send a text and meet in a specific location to spend time with each other or chat after work. Unfortunately, the threat of COVID-19 has limited face-to-face interactions and quarantined millions in their homes, leaving people feeling lonely. The need and desire for companionship inevitably increased, that having the opportunity to see someone and talk to them regularly despite the distance and without physical contact gradually became the norm.

Hence, video-based communication slowly took over long-distance phone calls and personal meetups.

As a testament to the rising fame of online video dating, here are some of the most notable reasons behind its steady success:

  • Social Presence — As Aristotle said, humans are social beings. With multiple lockdowns being imposed and strict social distancing protocols, the capacity to be physically social is a thing of the past. The phenomenon resulted in the decline of mental health and the sudden surge in cases of people suffering from depression and anxiety. Video dating aided in lessening these cases by allowing people from different parts of the world to talk to each other face to face. The platform provided each other with a presence that voice calls and chat could not give.
  • Confidence Boost— Virtual meetings are the new norm. It looks and feels different from face-to-face meetings. People get to see the other party on the screen and talk normally as though they were talking in person. This has helped in building confidence for daters. They started to think that if they were confident in front of their co-workers in virtual meetings, then a video date should be a breeze.
  • Worthwhile Diversion— Most of the population was either laid off or is going through an asynchronous system of education. This means that people have more time on their hands. They were left with more time to themselves and more space for entertaining unhealthy thoughts. As video calls began to swoop in and help individuals talk to another human being, their thoughts and emotional stresses slowly lightened up. Their concentration shifted towards getting to know a potential partner or forming new friendships to cope with the ongoing crisis.
  • Swiping Fatigue — The most popular dating apps have been using the swiping feature quite frequently as a means to help users choose among a pool of potential partners more easily. People got tired of that especially since it also reduced the chances of any real connection being made. Choosing a person to connect with became all too superficial and based on physical appearance alone. While the swiping feature is not entirely a bad thing, people eventually grew tired of it and instead sought a way to dig deeper into the personalities of the person that piqued their interest.
  • Better Time Management — The value of time was redefined by the pandemic and many individuals started to want to settle down. Thus, video dating aided in this endeavor by providing quality calls that truly bring out the personality of the person across the screen. In chat, anyone could fake reactions with emojis and possibly get catfished; which, in turn, increases the chances of wasted time. It keeps romantic hopefuls from getting hurt in the process. A video call ensures the authenticity of the user; thus, lessening the time wasted on someone who may not be looking for a serious commitment.
  • It Is Our New Reality — Lastly, it is a new truth. No one knows how long until the pandemic finally ends and everyone on earth is vaccinated or cured of the virus. Until then, people have accepted and decided to adapt to the new normal. Several individuals have been taking a chance in love, finding ways to connect with others on a deeper level and survive the pandemic by forming both romantic and platonic relations.

These are the main reasons why video dating has come back and become the new trend in the dating scene. But what is in it for users to push through with it and get to know the person on the other end? 

The Attractiveness of Dating Through Video

Opportunities come and go, but being able to find love through a single video call is something revolutionary. Video dating is predicted to prevail for the following perks it presents to various end-users:

  • Reach The Ends of the Earth — The opportunity to connect with someone who is ‘in the same sea’ as you despite being in a different ‘boat’ is a beautiful thing that video dating brings to life. Not to mention, humans are curious creatures. They also want to know how it feels to fall in love with someone who lives on the other half of the world’s hemisphere. While this is not new, video chats and calls have become more rampant following the motivation to date someone from a different timezone.
  • Standards Are Met — The majority of people who resort to online dating each have ideal characteristics that they seek in potential partners. Video dating gives them this opportunity by accessing the person upfront, all while they are in the comforts of their home. They get to see each other’s surroundings. More importantly, people get a glimpse of how they act and react in their comfort zone. It lessens the time it used to take in the past. Previously, people had to go through several dates before they felt comfortable enough with each other to take things to the next level.
  • Higher Chances of Finding ‘The One’ — As stated above, you have more time in your hands to find who you truly want to be with. On average, a video call can last between one and two hours—maybe even six if you are truly invested in the person. Video dating gives you the opportunity to filter who you would want to date and continue to spend time with even after the call or the pandemic ends.

Now that you know why video calls reemerged as a trend along with key features you can utilize to your advantage, here is a list of the best dating apps to check out if you truly want to pursue a virtually enabled communication with your special someone. 

Top Video Dating Apps: Choose the Right One for You

Dating apps have reshaped conventional dating as we know it. With remarkable features that enable users to get instant and unlimited access to different profiles, finding short-term and long-term relationships has never been this easy. In truth, even connections that fall somewhere in the gray area where commitment and casual desires overlap seemingly had more chances of veering into a more mutual conclusion thanks to video dating.

As we move closer to the so-called post-pandemic new normal, dating app developers are now embracing innovations that will add more dimensions to online dating. Smartphones are ruling the lifestyles of present-day end-users, and so several dating apps have incorporated video features into their software.

Such changes will introduce a more immersive version of swiping and clicking experience for online daters. It will also provide a closer glimpse of someone else’s personality. In this light, here are the best online video dating sites that you can use if you find scrolling through photos of attractive people are already a thing of the past. 

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1. Hinge

Although Hinge is already a popular dating app, they never considered adding video features into their app—until 2017.

The reason being that users find swiping from one photo to another bland and somewhat misleading. Some users even end up on bad dates because they can only see a user’s photo and end up with unpleasant discoveries and disappointments once they meet in person. Meanwhile, the added video feature significantly changed how a user sees a person and enabled a more immersive level of scrutiny.

If you find yourself mindlessly swiping back and forth from one photo to another but have zero clue about their personality, then you might want to try Hinge. It is easy to use and there are tons of romantic opportunities waiting for you. 

2. Tinder

Tinder is yet another dating app with live video features. It first gained popularity in 2013. Since then, Tinder has continuously dominated a huge part of the online dating industry.

With in-app video calls functions that allow its “matches” to interact (without disclosing any personal information), Tinder has introduced a more compelling dating platform for users across the globe. Along with that, the dating app giant introduced the Safety Center to protect users’ safety. It works by pressing the panic button on the app’s UI when the user feels unsafe with their face-to-face date. Talk about an all-in-one dating application!

Tinder surely exhibited a fearless, non-stop fiddling with its benchmark, while ensuring users get to expect tons of new features to help them get a seamless and safe online dating experience in the future. 

3. Lively

Owned by popular dating app maker Zoosk, Lively is an experimental video chat dating app that combines augmented live video chat features and trivia games with the goal of letting users meet someone new.

The developers believe that creating a conversation with a stranger is rather difficult to pull off and somewhat awkward from different angles. So, they decided to incorporate trivia games for matched users to make conversation easier and more relevant.

The app allows up to four users to participate in the trivia game. The participants must answer twelve trivia questions. Lively’s objective is to pair people regardless of their preferences, standpoints, and beliefs by allowing them to interact with each other in real-time.

If you find video dating is not enough for you or if you want to show off your inner trivia genius, then Lively might work best for you. 

4. Bumble

Bumble helps people find dates or friends in their area, but with a catch: The queen bees (or the female users) should be the ones to make the first move to create a mutual connection with another person. The male users in return, must act right away, or they lose the chance to establish a connection after 24 hours of inactivity or zero response.

Users get a 24-hour extension max. After that, no more do-overs.

Bumble added their video chat features two years ago, and it worked like magic!

It has helped users quench their mingling desires during the quarantine blues. The update came with a trivia game to give users something to do or talk about during their first-time video chat session.

Compared to other online dating apps, Bumble mostly leaves the heavy lifting to female users. So, if you’re the shy type of guy who struggles to make the first move, then Bumble may come in handy.

Note: Bumble is not limited to straight users, it allows same-sex connection as well!

5. Match

Match is yet another excellent online video dating app that is now made available on smartphones! It has a story feature that allows users to post a video of them showing off their personality, making Match a contender in this growing industry.

Although its format bears a resemblance to that of Lively’s, what sets it apart is the fact that users can post videos that are 60 seconds long. They can also narrate the content they posted. It is akin to a video version of your journal. Cool, right?

The app took the typical photo swiping norm to the next level. Indeed, hearing someone’s voice is an important factor in attracting someone compared to looking at a still photo.

If you want a subtle yet effective video dating app, Match is—pardon the pun—a good Match for you!

Other notable, up-and-coming apps worth checking out are:

  • OkCupid
  • SLIDE
  • Zepeel
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Luvr

All of the aforementioned applications are available to both iOS and Android users. Initially, users can download and use it for free, but some in-app purchases are needed to gain extended access to their app(s) of choice.

What are the Risks of Online Dating?

Online dating is by far the best avenue for meeting new people in this shelter-in-place era. At the same time, its popularity entails major drawbacks in the form of security risks and challenges. The current generation may be tech-savvies, but they are not automatically tech-safe! As such, it is important to know the risks of online video dating. Here are three of the most popular security challenges that online daters may encounter. 

1. Romance Scam

Who says frauds are only for chatting? As we progress to more sophisticated technologies, so are scammers. Nestling behind their computer screen, these notorious individuals can easily fool an unsuspecting user in a matter of minutes. Unsurprisingly, they have adapted to survive on online video dating platforms.

One of the most effective tactics that scammers use is identity theft. The practice takes place when a scammer uses someone else’s identity to commit crimes. They prey on their victims’ accounts and drain them dry for their own advantage.

So how can they apply identity theft to you when you can actually see the person on the other end? Simple, they take a screenshot of your face or record you while you are video calling them. They can use your stolen image for different fraudulent schemes, so be very wary when using online video chat.

Another example of a romance scam is phishing, where scammers trick and convince their victims to give out their personal information, bank accounts details, social security number, credit card numbers, passwords, and other confidential information to steal money and other expensive or valuable belongings.

Most of the time, these scammers don’t work alone. They work for a large organization of scammers. In that sense, instead of using a fake-fake profile, they have the capacity to use a real person to interact with you, make you fall in love with them, then lure you into a fast-developing relationship. Once they completely gain your trust, that’s the time they will drain your wallet dry, Before you can even react, they’re long gone. Voila! You’ve been scammed. 

2. Discrimination

Online dating apps cater to people with varying sexual preferences. Some people prefer partners outside their race, while some are part of the LGBTQ+ community. These preferences alone breed different forms of discrimination among users.

Most of the time, people who belong to the LGBTQ+ community and interracial couples are at the receiving end of online discrimination. It takes place even within the online dating setup. Closed-minded individuals make online dating platforms a living hell for these individuals. They spit discriminatory slurs, exhibit racism, sexism, and other derogatory remarks that are deemed hurtful to people especially to dating app users whose romantic choices do not coincide with what the old-fashioned part of society datedly deems as the norm in intimate relationships. 

3. Harassment

End-users, particularly those belonging to the younger age group, are more prone to online harassment compared to users in their early thirties or late forties. For young users, they see online dating apps as portals to develop lasting relationships online.

While they may have the capacity to navigate the modern setup with ease, they don’t have the resilience to withstand the heft of harassment present in the online space. Therefore, understanding the dangers of online harassment is important now more than ever.

As they delve deeper into this so-called romance space, they must be aware that not all users are decent. Some of them are outright disturbing and vulgar. They may encounter unwanted advances from them, receive sexually explicit multimedia content, and other forms of vexation across different online dating apps.

Those who own dating sites, or are developers of apps inclined towards building casual to serious relationships must take immediate actions to prevent these hurdles causing further damage. If you are the CEO of a dating app, it is your responsibility to protect your members, uphold their trust, and preserve your credibility.

One effective solution is setting up a moderation system.

Moderation is no new frontier. Most dating apps overlook the importance of having a trusty moderation system in place. They are entirely unaware of what benefits their online dating site can get with an efficient moderation system working in the background.

Moderation helps online dating service providers improve their knack for helping people fall in love online. By giving them the capacity to monitor every user’s behavior, it becomes easier for them to protect their patrons from unwanted content and abusive individuals.

Equipped with advanced and smart tools and filters, moderation allows you to verify the authenticity of profiles, detect fraudulent schemes, and scan UGCs. Ultimately, it improves your online credibility and entices more people to join. 

Video Dating Apps are Here to Stay

Video dating apps are not showing signs of slowing down. It is reshaping the very structure of online dating as we know it. Have you noticed how one new app simultaneously emerges after another?

With flexible features that can accommodate people with different romantic preferences, online video dating sites are really the new trend. On the other hand, it is a must know that behind those sparks and heart emojis are challenges secretly damaging this otherwise peaceful and blissful space.

These hostile individuals are relentlessly tinkering with their tactics to adapt to this changing environment. For you to produce a successful online dating platform, you need to take fast-acting countermeasures. Put a stop to these frauds from causing further damage to your reputation in the form of content moderation.

If you don’t have the slightest idea of what online dating moderation is, Chekkee might be of great help.

Chekkee is an Australian-based company specializing in providing effective content moderation. Our online dating moderation service is tailored to help you get genuine users and improve satisfaction. Backed with the latest tools and dedicated human moderators, we ensure that your online dating is free from scammers and inappropriate content.

If you need a helping hand to ensure the safety of your online daters, contact us today! 

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