Raise your hand if you’ve experienced this: you check in on Foursquare and allow it to post to Twitter, and seconds later you realize you’ve checked in with (yep – also tweeted) a complete stranger. Sure, he’s technically your Foursquare “friend,” but we all know that designation means boo.
So, do you go up and say hello?
“Hi, I’m Ashleigh. I just accidentally tweeted you. It appears we’re friends, but I’ve never actually spoken to you, seen you face-to-face…and now we’re sharing the same 1,000 square feet in Starbucks and I feel awkward not saying, err, hello.”
If you can claim this embarrassment as your own, Apple has a great invention for you.
To the likes of a “Find My Friends” API code, Apple’s newly revealed patent allows one’s iPhone to search “common interests and experiences of two or more users,” pulling from published web content (yeah, ever use Facebook or LinkedIn?!), personal info you save to your phone, stored GPS locations, etc. Using said resources, it determines if those two (or more) like-minded users are in the same approximate vicinity.
Here’s where the magic continues. Having stored your past GPS locations, mobile photos, iTunes downloads – and other such soul-revealing, incriminating data, your matchmaking iPhone could very well shoot you an “icebreaker” popup or text, to make a seemingly awkward confrontation (i.e. “date”) less so. As obvious privacy issues could ensue, let’s assume one would have to opt into such features.
The answer to the “So, how’d you two meet?” question now leaves open the possibility for the uncomfortable and weird answer, “Oh, an iPhone app.”
Then again, to be fair, have you ever had numerous Twitter conversations with a “friend” (i.e. follower) and then, once at the same nerdy social media conference (hey, it’s happened!), you’re thrilled to speak “IRL”? … But still embarrassed to introduce him to your friends and as someone you “met on Twitter.”
Though admittedly similar, Apple’s so-called iDating concept is unique. And odd.
But hey, Apple thinks it can help you meet people. So, why not? As it turns out, anyone who tries to naysay Apple looks pretty foolish in the end.
Let’s just assume that this SoMe progression will take off and serve to be useful. Otherwise, Apple could have just jumped off the deep-end.