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STUDY: How Smartphones Have Changed Dating Culture

Posted: 09/11/2013 11:21 pm

Since the invention of smartphones, singles have been feuding over texting versus calling--and for good reason. These days even emojis are getting in the way of relationships. As an online dating expert I hear arguments for both sides loud and clear, but a new study on Mobile's Impact on Dating and Relationships (commissioned by ChristianMingle and JDate) sheds some blue light onto singles' texting habits and preferences by dating stage and device.

Pre-Meet Texts: Before meeting face-to-face with a match, women tell me that they'd prefer a guy to call, while gents cite calling as too forward. In fact, one of my male Twitter followers recently told me that calling a woman was "annoying and intrusive" and it "demanded they stop what they're doing and pay attention to you." (P.S. That's the point, dude.)

Meanwhile, the data tells a different story, finding that approximately one-third of both sexes agree it's less intimidating to ask someone out via text. But while texting her "hello" may be less intimidating, that doesn't mean it's what women prefer. 68 percent of singles still want to talk on the phone or in person to schedule dates. In today's techie world, texting is the typical approach in social circumstances but confidence is a trait that singles repeatedly prioritize. So stop being passive, pick up the phone and show genuine interest.

Post-Date Texts: In my book, Love @ First Click, I highlight the importance of the thank you text. If you had a great time, dropping your date a quick note to this effect is a nice touch. Not only does it make your feelings clear in a low-pressure way, but also it opens the door for more flirty conversation so you don't fall off your date's radar (or vice versa). But now, it's important to set your watch, too! 78 percent of singles expect to communicate within 24 hours after a good first date. If you don't, you could end up at the bottom of your date's virtual address book.

If things didn't go well on your date, don't be shocked any longer if your heart is put on the line. More than 50 percent of singles would consider breaking up with someone they were casually dating with just a few swipes on screen. And 24 percent of people would even consider ending an exclusive relationship via text!

iPhone vs. Android: Is that a 4G in your pocket or are you just happy to see me? Apparently, the device you carry speaks loudly (even when your ringer is on silent). An iPhone or Android isn't just a tech choice, it can give dates insight into your personality and behaviors, too. The study found that Android users are the more polite eDaters--they're more likely to pick up a date at home, pay for the first date, eat at a nice restaurant and send a post-date text.

And they're trusting of their partners, too. Nearly 50 percent of Android users would allow someone they are dating to look through their phone. Be still, my mobile heart!

Whatever device you tote, remember that tech is another tool to use in your eFlirt evolution. Texting mobile to mobile can bring you closer to heart to hearts the next time you meet. As your relationship develops, communicating via characters is inevitable and when done thoughtfully, can enhance your budding relationship.

Laurie Davis is an online dating coach and the author of Love @ First Click: The Ultimate Guide to Online Dating. She helps singles navigate the Wink Wide Web via dating profile writing, text decoding, Facebook flirting and offline meeting. She is engaged to her tweetheart who she eFlirted with in 140 characters on Twitter.

 
 
 

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