Number of marriges and engagements from online dating

The benefits are clearest for people whose preferences mean that discovering possible partners is particularly hard, either because of social isolation or physical isolation.

Same-sex dating, which both operates in a smaller pool than heterosexual dating and is illegal or socially unacceptable in many places, is a particular beneficiary.

The business is worth .6bn globally, growing fast and highly competitive.

Match Group, which operates Tinder, the original and some 40 similar businesses, had revenues of

The benefits are clearest for people whose preferences mean that discovering possible partners is particularly hard, either because of social isolation or physical isolation.Same-sex dating, which both operates in a smaller pool than heterosexual dating and is illegal or socially unacceptable in many places, is a particular beneficiary.

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The benefits are clearest for people whose preferences mean that discovering possible partners is particularly hard, either because of social isolation or physical isolation.

Same-sex dating, which both operates in a smaller pool than heterosexual dating and is illegal or socially unacceptable in many places, is a particular beneficiary.

The business is worth $4.6bn globally, growing fast and highly competitive.

Match Group, which operates Tinder, the original and some 40 similar businesses, had revenues of $1.3bn in 2017—a similar figure to the revenues of American condom sellers.

In 2013 Tinder, a startup, introduced the masterfully simple idea of showing people potential partners and having them simply swipe right for “yes” and left for “no”; when two people swiped right on each other’s pictures they were put into contact with each other. Such phone-based services are more immediate, more personal and more public than their keyboard-based predecessors.

More immediate because instead of being used to plan future encounters, or to chat at a distance, they can be used on the fly to find someone right here, right now.

In 1995, less than a year after Netscape launched the first widely used browser, a site called was offering to help people answer those questions.

As befits a technology developed in the San Francisco Bay area, online dating first took off among gay men and geeks, but it soon spread, proving particularly helpful for people needing a way back into the world of dating after the break-up of a long-term relationship. The 2010s have seen these services move from the laptop to the phones with which young people have grown up.

.3bn in 2017—a similar figure to the revenues of American condom sellers.

In 2013 Tinder, a startup, introduced the masterfully simple idea of showing people potential partners and having them simply swipe right for “yes” and left for “no”; when two people swiped right on each other’s pictures they were put into contact with each other. Such phone-based services are more immediate, more personal and more public than their keyboard-based predecessors.

More immediate because instead of being used to plan future encounters, or to chat at a distance, they can be used on the fly to find someone right here, right now.

In 1995, less than a year after Netscape launched the first widely used browser, a site called was offering to help people answer those questions.

As befits a technology developed in the San Francisco Bay area, online dating first took off among gay men and geeks, but it soon spread, proving particularly helpful for people needing a way back into the world of dating after the break-up of a long-term relationship. The 2010s have seen these services move from the laptop to the phones with which young people have grown up.

Although Tinder has a clear lead, there are competitors in America, such as Bumble, set up by one of Tinder’s founders after leaving the company, and around the world, all seeking to sell themselves on some refinement or other. Users of many dating apps already link to their Facebook accounts to show who they are; a dating app that knew all that Facebook knows would have a powerful edge if it could use it well—and if users did not balk at the idea in a post-Cambridge Analytica world.Matching with same-sex partners over the internet is often far safer and more convenient than trying to do so in person.The internet thus helps those with similar, and sometimes quite specialised, views on what makes for good sex, or indeed on more or less anything else.More personal because the phone is intimate in a way the keyboard is not, camera-ready and always with you. Many people now feel quite happy swiping left or right on public transport, gossiping to their friends about potential matches.Screenshots of possible partners fly back and forth over Whats App and i Message.

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