Facebook has launched a show called Virtually Dating, a version of a blind date using HTC Vive VR technology.It’s a strange mix, because the people are physically in the same space but can only see each other and interact in VR.A recent study by researchers at West Virginia University and the University of Illinois looked at first physical date success after initial contact through online dating.In many cases, a decline in attraction occurred after the first face to face date, in spite of previously favourable online interactions.Moving from screen to VR invokes “presence” – the feeling of actually being in the virtual space itself.After all, advances in sex-related technology already offer the potential for a couple in VR to engage in a physical-sexual experience.Clearly the stigma attached to internet dating has long since been drowned out by the cooing of amorous lovers.
Research has shown that unlike real-life dating, online daters rely on categorical attributes such as education, income and age rather than experiential attributes such as humor, charisma or rapport.
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As online dating increases, virtual dating could definitely be the natural next stage in the dating revolution, so if you're looking for love but have previously been put off by safety, cost or time constraints than rev up that virtual hovercraft and plot a course for love.
David Evans Bailey does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.
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This is dating where a version of you can spend time in the same virtual space as your love interest, but without physically being there at all.