Falling for a person whose face you’ve never seen might sound like a fairytale or a nightmare, but either way a new app wants to make it a reality.
Taffyis a dating and friendship app that operates on the premise that getting to know someone through text can sometimes be better than judging solely on how they look. It’s launching today for iOS. (An Android version is promised soon.)
So how, exactly, does this work? Basically you won’t be able to see your potential match’s photos at first. Instead, all you see is a catchy headline on top of a blurred out picture. You have to start a chat with them sight basically unseen and hope it pays off.
You start by creating a profile for yourself, as you would with any dating app. But then instead of just matching based on those, you create a specific post in any number of categories (like “love,” “chat,” or even “advice”). So you could have two different posts, one for dating and one for meeting pals.
You can then browse posts from others, depending on your interests, location, age, etc. While the blurred pics do lend a bit of a witness protection vibe to the proceedings, you can glean a lot from the kind of headline people opt for.
You can decide who to chat up, and if your conversation progresses, the person’s photo comes slowly into focus with each interaction. Eventually a totally clear picture of who you’re talking to emerges. The moment of truth.
John Schenk, the app’s founder, told_Mashable_that the goal of this approach is “to put personality on a level playing field with physical appearances.” Still, it’s a odd not to have a face to put to a name. The app does offer some ice breakers, in case you’re feeling shy about charging into a conversation with a mystery person.
On the one hand, this sounds like a refreshing change from the looks-focused atmosphere of apps like Tinder. But it also sounds like it could require a potentially large investment of time and energy, only to discover later that you’re just straight up not physically attracted to someone.
Schenk says it currently takes about 10 messages back and forth before your image is fully revealed. But he explained that the app’s algorithm will eventually take the quality of conversation into account when deciding how fast to reveal your match.
This isn’t the only app to put the focus on talking over looks — and one calledAppetencetakes a very similar, if a bit more complicated, approach. And, as with any of these apps, more than anything it will all come down to the kind of crowd it draws.
But, as the name suggests, if you really want to stretch your dating interactions out, Taffy could be the app for you.