Facebook caught virtually everyone unaware a couple of days ago when it announced plans to launch a dating service. Of course, it was a surprise: dating is pretty much a field Tinder is very much known for, and would pitch Facebook in direct competition with it. Secondly, Facebook is still trying to win the confidence of users back after the Cambridge Analytical scandal; so, no one was expecting that kind of announcement so soon. Now, that the cat has been let out of the bag, there might just be some valid reasons to seriously consider using the service when it is eventually rolled out.
Thanks to Recode, we now know that the upcoming dating service from the world’s largest social networking company will be free for all users. That is not all, Facebook’s new dating service will be without ads.
Recode cited a Facebook spokesperson who revealed that the company won’t run ads alongside your profile, and data associated with your dating profile or behavior won’t be used to target you with ads associated with other Facebook properties.
Though, no exact date has been mentioned for the possible launch of the service, the report suggests that tests are expected to begin in the coming months.
Now to how the new messaging service will work. The social media giant is reportedly building a new messaging service from scratch that will require you to access only with your Facebook account. The service will be independent of both WhatsApp and Messenger, but users will be free to swap numbers or usernames should they desire to. Messages will be limited to text-only, which means videos or photos or links will not be allowed.
Users will be matched by Facebook based on interest and other data such as your location. You will also be able to find possible matches by “unlocking” groups or events on Facebook that will allow you to connect with other singles that have also unlocked similar groups or events. The new dating service, however, won’t be visible to everyone, but will only be seen by non-friends who have opted into dating.
Potential matches will be recommended based on dating preferences, things in common, and mutual friends. They’ll have the option to discover others with similar interests through their Groups or Events, Facebook said per TechCrunch.
Per TechCrunch, here is how Facebook’s upcoming dating will work:
- Opt in to a create a profile with just your first name. Your profile won’t be visible to friends, users who aren’t on the dating feature, and it won’t show up in the News Feed.
- You’ll browse Events in your city and Groups that match your interests. You can select to ‘unlock’ one for dating. You’ll then see the profiles of other dating users who’ve unlocked that surface.
- You can browse through people’s profiles that show off a few of their photos plus some basic information about them. You’ll be shown people based on mutual interests and friends, plus other data Facebook has on you.
- If you both are interested, you’ll be able to start a conversation with someone in a special inbox that’s separate from Messenger and WhatsApp. For safety, only text can be sent for now.