Mobile dating

Mobile dating services, also known as cell dating, cellular dating,or cell phone dating, allow individuals to chat, meet, and possibly become romantically involved by means of text messaging, mobile chatting, and the web.

These services allow their users to provide information about themselves in a short profile which is stored in their phones as a dating ID. They can then search for other IDs online or by calling a certain phone number dictated by the service. The criteria include age, gender and sexual preference. Usually these sites are free to use but standard text messaging fees may still apply as well as a small fee the dating service charges per message.

Mobile dating websites, in order to increase the opportunities for meeting, focus attention on users that share the same social network and proximity. Some companies even offer services such as homing devices to alert users when another user is within thirty feet of one another. Some systems involve bluetooth technology to connect users in locations such as bars and clubs. This is known as proximity dating. These systems are actually more popular in some countries in Europe and Asia than online dating.

According to The San Francisco Chronicle in 2005, "Mobile dating is the next big leap in online socializing." More than 3.6 million cell phone users logged into mobile dating sites in March 2007, with most users falling in the under 35 age range.

Some experts believe that the rise in mobile dating is due to the growing popularity of online dating. Analyst Brent Iadarola of Frost & Sullivan said, "I think people are more comfortable with online dating, and it's generally been accepted, the comfort people have with online dating in the wired world is now translating to the mobile world." Others believe it is all about choice, as Joe Brennan Jr., vice president of Webdate says, "It's about giving people a choice. They don't have to date on their computer. They can date on their handset, it's all about letting people decide what path is best for them."


Some avoid these services for fear that the technology could be used to electronically harass users.Another issue is "asymmetry of interests", i.e. attrative member receives excessive attentions and leaves, which may result in deterioration of membership. The pictures are very small and cell phones are still a step behind computers in their ease to use.

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