Singaporeans Offered Mobile Dating Service

Ed Palomar
SINGAPORE — Single Singaporeans are being offered a dating service that utilizes cell phones. The mobile matchmaking is being provided to the Southeast Asian city-state by a software company named BEDD.

Using the Bluetooth short-range wireless technology, the BEDD software is downloaded to subscribers’ mobile phones. The users then enter information, such as the characteristics they desire in a date or mate. The subscribers are notified through their cells when a possible love interest is in the area.

Using the personal data supplied by users, the BEDD system rates men and women as to their compatibility. They are notified when a potential date is within 60 feet.

However, the mobile matchmaking technology can spare subscribers the embarrassment and rejection that often accompanies blind dates. Users can communicate via text messaging – and thereby avoid the discomfort of a potentially humiliating face-to-face situation.

The BEDD technology differs from that of other mobile matchmakers in Singapore and elsewhere in Asia. Other systems use a central database. One in Japan utilizes global positioning technology.

However, Bluetooth uses cell-to-cell transmission. Users must have Nokia’s Series 60 mobile phones. BEDD is in the process of developing a Java-compatible version that can be used on other cell phones.

There are 1,500 Singaporeans registered to use the BEDD mobile matchmaking technology. They pay only 57 U.S. cents per month for the service. Population growth has slowed in the so-called Lion City, and Singapore has government programs and agencies that promote marriage.

The BEDD mobile matchmaker will be introduced in nearby Indonesia next.