Match.com, the O.G. of dating websites, just launched “Missed Connections,” a feature where users can see other members based on location. While its a first for the site, the dating app Happn is already based on this premise: two singles cross paths, perhaps on the subway or at a park, without ever speaking, only to connect via GPS. Its a slightly more romantic premise than Tinder, but Happn is far too similar to other apps and drains phone batteries (since it’s always tracking you).
Now, Match is using their own hyperlocation technology to match people after they cross paths IRL. The technology will allow both parties to start a conversation using the app. The beta version has been available in San Francisco and Dallas, where more than two thirds of Match users opted in. According to Match, those users were twice as likely to have conversations, thanks to the new feature.
While this might seem like an unnecessary update, Match’s annual “Singles in America” survey found 55 percent of singles believed apps make it more difficult to meet someone in real life. By combining reality with dating apps, they hope to make it easier to meet someone kind of in person.
Unlike Happn, Match doesn’t use location alone to connect singles. The matches are also created using the site’s existing algorithm. Meeting a stranger from across the subway platform feels serendipitous, even if it’s a meet-cute courtesy of a dating site. And it’s certainly more romantic than Craiglist’s “Missed Connections.”