An app for a date. A like for a like

Monday, 30 December 2013 - 12:29pm IST | Agency: DNA
In this country, asking a girl or a guy out on a date can be a complicated job, irrelevant of how old you are. However, a mobile app that lets you 'crush' on someone anonymously might make things a little simpler…

Dating as a practice isn’t exactly touted to be one of the most approved methods of finding love or even a bit of romance. But we aren’t exactly catering to acceptable social norms are we?

A recently launched app for Android, Krush, lets you find someone you could possibly go out for drinks with, just by ‘liking’ each other anonymously. Sounds a bit confusing, does it? It’s quite simply really. You download the app on your Android phone, approve or reject possible matches suggested by the app, and wait for the person you liked to like you back. And all this, quite anonymously. So until the person you like has, on his or her own accord, liked you back, you don’t get to know each other.

Rajat Rao, one of the four founders of Krush, says that the painful process of asking or being asked for an introduction is one of the inspirations behind the development of this app. “Krush uses your Facebook information to log you in. And it uses friends and friends of friends as possible matches. The algorithm is developed in such a way that it takes common aspects to match people – profession, age, gender, religious beliefs etc, to name a few. It’s the need of the hour. People want to date but often can’t muster enough courage to meet people. With it being anonymous, one can safely express interest in another person and get a response only if the other person is interested as well,” he explains.

Curiosity got the better of us as we decided to experiment a little with Krush. The app has a simple interface and what it does is, at 7pm every evening, it gives you a list of 30 names that could be compatible with you. You get to like the person or reject the person. You can also see how many people are ‘crushing’ on you under the ‘Matches’ section. But you won’t know who they are unless you end up liking them as well by chance.

Security is the first thing that comes to mind — how safe is this app? “We do not share phone numbers or email addresses. So the person cannot contact you unless you both like each other.
Plus, we have various levels of security in place. For instance, if two people like each other, which is when they are allowed to chat on Krush, and one of them is being a menace, the other person can block the offender without his or her knowledge,” Rao adds.

The app is still in its nascent stage, but within three days of it being launched, has been downloaded 350 times already. Will something like this work in India, where dating isn’t exactly considered to be common? “I think it’s a very interesting app. I will definitely check it out. But I am worried that even married people would be out there looking for single people to date and the other person wouldn’t know till it’s too late,” says Monisha Singh, a 34-year-old entrepreneur.
Shravan PS, 24, says, “I wouldn’t download such an app because I don’t think it is safe. And even if I did, it would be for fun for sometime and then, I would delete it.”

Priyam KC, 25, observes, “I find apps like these to be psychologically unsafe. Personally, I usually don’t download apps if they are not personalised. Whether it’s shopping or dating, one usually lives in a constant fear of losing privacy.” Twenty three-year-old Swati S says that she’d much rather meet someone directly through a friend and “not because an app thought we could be compatible. I think a lot of random people would sign up just to have some fun. They might not take such apps seriously and may not end up respecting the other person’s feelings.”

However, Akshay M, 26, is willing to try. “There are always loopholes when you’re doing something virtually. But I wouldn’t mind downloading this app to check it out and to see if I can actually find a date!” 38-year-old Dylan, who’s been single for the past seven years, is a bit more courageous when it comes to experimenting with apps. “I don’t want to embarrass myself by expressing interest in a woman openly. But if it’s anonymous, and the girl won’t find out that I like her till she likes me back, I am willing to check it out. I guess if two people end up like each other, you can’t feel stupid about it!” he says.

Kiran MR, 25, says that she prefers to socialise in person and wouldn’t wait for an app to hook her up but she would download it. “Who knows? I might get to meet more people from my circle, people I would have never thought of otherwise.”




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