Bumble's Whitney Wolfhard says AI can date 'hundreds' of people for you.

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Imagine this: You've “dated” 600 people in San Francisco without typing a single word to any of them. Instead, a busy little bot has completed the inane 'getting to know you' chatter on your behalf, telling you which people to connect with. in fact Get off the couch to meet.

According to Whitney Wolfe Hurd, this is the future of dating and she knows it.

Wolfe Herd is the founder and executive chair of Bumble, a meeting and networking platform that inspires women to take the first step.

While the platform has now changed that aspect of its algorithm, Wolfhard said the company will always keep its “north star” in mind: “a safer, kinder digital platform for healthier and more equal relationships.” Form.

“Always putting women in the driver's seat — not to put men down — but to actually reframe the way we all treat each other.”

Like any platform, Bumble is now navigating itself in the world of AI—which means how humans will interact with each other in the growing age of chatbots.

This could streamline the matching process, Wolfhard told the Bloomberg Technology Summit in San Francisco this week.

“If you really want to get out there, there's a world where your [AI] Dating concierges can match you with other dating concierges,” she told host Emily Chang. “Really. And then you don't have to talk to 600 people. It will scan all of San Francisco for you and say: 'These are three people you'll never really meet.'

And forget catch-ups with friends, exchange notes on your love life.

Artificial intelligence—which has seen massive investment since OpenAI disrupted the market with its ChatGPT large-scale language model—can help train individuals how to date and be themselves. How to present yourself in the best light to potential partners.

“So, for example, you could talk to your AI dating concierge in the near future and you could express your insecurities,” explained Wolfhard. “'I just got out of a breakup, I'm having commitment issues,' and that can help train you in a better way of thinking about yourself.”

“It can then give you productive suggestions for interacting with other people,” he added.

If these features do indeed come to Bumble in the future, they will impact the experience of millions.

In fact, according to data from Business of Apps, while Tinder still holds the market share in the US (27%) Bumble is just behind (26%).

The company also posted what it called “solid” full-year results in February.

In Q4 2023, revenue increased 13.2% to $273.6 million from $241.6 million in Q4 2022. Total paying customers also increased by 16.4% to 4 million, compared to 3.4 million in the same quarter a year ago.

Bot love is 'just an obsession'

The intersection between bots and romance is already ringing alarm bells for the masses.

In 2021, the AI ​​companion app Replica came under scrutiny after authorities in the UK found a 19-year-old man planning to kill the Queen after being prompted by an AI girlfriend created on the app.

Experts have also raised concerns about a perceived void of legal or ethical frameworks for apps that encourage deep bonds, but are owned by companies that ultimately need to make a profit.

Experts say they've seen emotional stress among users after companies make changes to their apps or shut them down, as Soulmate AI did in September.

Additionally, an analysis of 11 romantic chatbot apps released in February by the nonprofit Mozilla Foundation found that nearly every app tested sold user data, shared it for advertising, or compromised its privacy. The policies do not provide adequate information about these points.

While Bumble is far from AI-powered partners, Wolfe Herd allays such concerns about the broader industry.

“It's a little weird,” he said. “But it's an obsession. I mean, listen, I'm sure there are people out there who can befriend some form of AI and that's fine. But our focus with AI is to help create more healthy and equitable relationships. to do.”

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