When you are walking down the street no dating app is ever tell you if you have just passed by the love of your life…until now. FlirtAR, the world’s first Augmented Reality dating app, uses AR software so you can the view the name, age and interests of other FlirtAR users passing by. While dating apps have been criticized for artificially creating relationships, FlirtAR allows you to meet in the real world in an exciting and spontaneous way.
LA TechWatch chatted with founder and CEO Renan Godinho about the company and how it plans to change the mobile dating apps.
Tell us about the product or service.
FlirtAR will use facial recognition, geolocation, and augmented reality to show user dating profiles and begin conversations with potential dates in the real world and in real time. In other words, the FlirtAR app offers the algorithmic possibility to discover love at first sight!
How? By algorithmically combining face recognition technology with geolocation information to not only allow registered users to access the dating profiles of other registered users* when they see that special someone, in the real world, but also to begin a conversation with him or her immediately.
Imagine you are walking on the Santa Monica pier and suddenly you see the crush of your dreams? Open the FlirtAR app and point to the person, and if he or she is registered, we’ll show you the name, age, interests of that person, and even the music that the person is currently listening to depending upon how that user has configured his or her profile and permissions.
The person you would like to meet will get a notification, and if he or she is interested, just start a conversation! Because you have access to the individual’s profile, starting a conversation is as easy as saying “I love this song, too” or “I also love hiking and volunteering.”
Of course, privacy is very important to us at FlirtAR.* We will never show your profile to any unregistered user. Every user must log in with social networks, and proceed through a double-verification process in order to validate his or her profile and personal information. One of our top priorities is the complete elimination and absence of fake profiles on this application.
In addition, you can activate the app in invisible mode, which allows you to browse the profiles of others, but not be visible to them. The app can be configured by the user not only for dating, but also to help people make new friends.
How is it different?
People waste lots of time with traditional dating apps. They spend hours and hours of their valuable time looking for someone they never meet. Then when they do see those people in the real world, often the profiles and the real person don’t match up at all! Traditional dating apps require a heavy investment of time and effort, all before you actually see the person in real life. FlirtAR technology saves time and money by allowing people to meet organically, in the real world, and in real time.
What market are you attacking and how big is it?
Online Dating. The revenue in the “Online Dating” segment currently amounts to $1.39B in 2017. Revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2017-2021) of 3.3 % resulting in a market volume of $1,584m in 2021. Additionally, user penetration is at 7.4 % in 2017 and is expected to hit 8.3 % in 2021. The average revenue per user (ARPU) currently amounts to $4.76.
What is the business model?
It will be totally free to users. Revenue with Premium services in the app.
How do you manage privacy concerns associated with the offline to online bridge happening with immediacy on your app?
Privacy is very important to us at FlirtAR.* We will never show your profile to any unregistered user. Every user must log in with social networks, and proceed through a double-verification process in order to validate his or her profile and personal information. One of our top priorities is the complete elimination and absence of fake profiles on this application. In addition, you can activate the app in invisible mode, which allows you to browse the profiles of others, but not be visible to them.
Tell us a little about your background and what inspired the business?
In addition to FlirtAR, we also founded Easy Emprego in 2014 and are renowned in Brazil. His talent has caught the attention of several key innovators in the US technology market, including Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak, with whom I maintains a close friendship.
I don’t believe in Eureka moment but I had the idea after stating to myself that I needed to create “the next big thing” in dating services. The idea came to my head in a few minutes, it was incredible. Obviously, I know the market that I’m working very well, of course, this background helped me to think about the idea. I’m a big fan of augmented reality and virtual reality too.
Tell us what building your company in LA has been like?
Los Angeles is incredible! You find A lot of tech talent around here. I’m sure LA will be the new Silicon Valley soon. It is very rewarding to undertake here and being a MADE IN LA company.
What are the milestones that you plan to achieve within six months?
Reach 10 million users in the US.
If you could be put in touch with one investor in the community who would it be and why?
Elon Musk, he’s a visionary.
What does being “Made in LA” mean to you and your company?
Reason for pride and satisfaction. The atmosphere of Los Angeles is different of all cities in the world, LA is a reference in fashion, film, music and now technology. We want to be part of the history of Los Angeles.
What else can be done to promote early stage entrepreneurship in Los Angeles?
Encourage young people in high school, and create more ideas accelerators and incubators.
What is your favorite LA bar, when you need to kick back and relax?