Vibe Check: Match’s New Video Feature Helps Users Date While Distancing

In the wake of the COVID-19 quarantine, Match has launched an in-app video tool, virtual events, and dating hotline.

Dallas-headquartered dating pioneer Match has been helping singles navigate the complications of monogamy for more than two decades. Faced with unprecedented times during the COVID-19 pandemic, the team had to quickly reprioritize its product roadmap. Now, it’s introducing Vibe Check.

While people across the U.S. practice social distancing from the confines of their individual homes, they can now go on “dates” at the same time. Vibe Check is a new safe video chat feature that lets members swap face time live in the Match app. Videos last as long as the individuals like, and can be ended at any time.

All communication is done via Match, so no personal contact information has to be exchanged if two people don’t “vibe.”

It works like this, according to a Match blog:

Once you’ve matched and started a conversation with someone, a black video icon will appear at the bottom of your messages. After agreeing to the terms and conditions, you’ll be able to request a Vibe Check. The other member can either join right away or decline the request if it’s not a good time. Be sure to enable push notifications in order to receive Vibe Check invites.

This isn’t the first time Match has undergone some technical upgrades, though.

Last year, we introduced you to Match’s fairly new CEO, Hesam Hosseini, whose goal was to marry humans and algorithms to take users beyond a first date. He gave Match a makeover, completely overhauling the app and launching an in-house dating coach service.

Now, Hosseini and his team are doing even more to ignite personal connections during quarantine.

[Image: Courtesy Match]

Match re-tooled their traditional in-person events to host a series of virtual events for locals in 10 markets, including Dallas. Led by an expert dating moderator, the Virtual Happy Hours will start locally next month.

Also newly launched is Match’s Dating While Distancing Hotline. The free hotline (at 1-888-302-6224) allows anyone to live chat with an expert, ask relevant questions, and voice concerns. Since launching, Match said it’s busiest call-in day was March 27 and two times more men call than women.

Here’s an example of what might go down on a call:

I’m about to go on my first video date and feeling nervous about the whole thing. How should I handle this? 
My favorite way to defuse awkward situations is to call out how awkward it is. A simple “well this is awkward” can help you to decipher whether it’s just an awkward moment or this may not be a connection. We also need to give people some leeway and grace until this becomes the new normal for now. We all may be a bit weird on video at first.

Users have also asked how to date in this “new normal” and creative ideas to do on first dates.

Outside of in-app updates, Match has also been charitable during the coronavirus pandemic. Last week, we told you about Match making a $30,000 donation in total to the ​Dinner Bell Foundation, a nonprofit created by the barbecue connoisseurs at Pecan Lodge. You can read more about that here.

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