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Virtual & Augmented Reality

Dating Digital: Meeting people in the digital age

The digital transformation is bringing change to many areas of our lives. Once upon a time, you courted a woman by talking to her and asking her on a date. People communicated in letters and on the phone, or simply in person. How has getting to know one another really changed today?

16 Feb. 2016

It's a fact that communication has become more digital. There were some 45 million smartphone users in 2015 (compare 2016 statistic). One out of every two Germans has mobile online access, whether via e-mail at work or with What's App for their personal lives. Out in the street you see people looking at their smartphones. In the era of Tinder, Lovoo and Happn, the way we make new connections in our private lives is also undergoing a revolution. Dating digital , in other words. The market is huge: more than 8.2 million people in Germany use online dating sites (compare 2016 statistic). With dating apps attracting increasing interest, the chances of finding a partner are also on the rise.

Philippe Meriaux , COO of Happn, is presenting the dating app's recipe for success on the Open Stage at this year's CeBIT Global Conferences .

The focus here is on the moment when contact might have been made because two people were in the same place at the same time. The app shows people who have met at least passively somewhere, and generates the connection. "Refind people you have previously met" – Why not find your dream partner with an app? It's almost a reinvention of the blind date. First people find out if they get along, and then they dare to take the next step. Users take no risks, because an attraction for the other person is only shared if both feel the same way.


The number of people is growing worldwide, and so is anonymity. Dating websites can be viewed as a positive trend against this rising anonymity. People are brought together and nothing stands between them and a happy relationship.

But what does happiness look like with the digital transformation? Is happiness digital or analog ? Theologian Dr. Wolfgang Huber addresses this question by presenting his ethical view of the digital transformation. Are we losing personal connections with digitization? What are the opportunities and risks? The digital transformation brings plenty of change to our lives. Not all change is bad, as the success of dating apps demonstrates.

The topic is a compelling one, as both these presentations will show. There are many opportunities, and also a few risks. You can learn more about dating digital and the ethical aspects of the digital transformation at the CeBIT Global Conferences (CGC), starting on 14 March at the Hannover Exhibition Center.