With traditional arranged marriages now going out of fashion, what does AI bring to the game of matchmaking in India?
With digital matchmaking services so common, matches are now not made exclusively in heaven or Netflix dramas.
Technologies such as AI, ML, robotics, and chatbots are playing an important role in helping people to find a better match. In India, although traditional matchmaking will co-exist with modern-day dating websites, technology will change the entire course of how the young generation find romance.
What goes into marrying the various analytics and algorithms into pairing the right people? What precautions are used to weed out potential fraud and dishonesty among candidates?
DigiconAsia interviewed two co-founders of a matchmaking service in India to find out more: Pawan Gupta (co-founder and CEO) and Rahul Namdev (co-founder and CTO) of Betterhalf.ai.
DigiconAsia: Matrimony in India now involves viewing candidate profiles and swiping left or right to send or accept an invitation. How is this change being accepted by the users?
Pawan Gupta (Pawan): The Indian lifestyle has made considerable progress, and more individuals are searching for partners outside the recommended standards and customs. Prior it was just orchestrated marriage, which was essential for the Indian culture in which guardians were the fundamental leaders.
Today, as youngsters assume responsibility for their careers and financial freedom, they trust their own judgment and perspectives in courtship and marriage matters.
DigiconAsia: What are some of the modern-day matchmaking challenges faced by matchmaking services? How is technology helping to smoothen the hurdles?
Pawan: As registration is free in some of these websites, people create fake profiles online. Members are generally not able to differentiate between a genuine and a fake profile and may become a victim of fraud.
Also, the internet can be accessed universally; you never know how far your private details will travel. This can be fatal for one’s reputation. Many people do not reveal true details about their past, and this can also mislead others.
This may make shortlisting candidates a haphazard situation. Therefore members should be careful enough to have detailed information before making any decisions. To help members, here are three areas where AI can make a difference:
- AI predicts matches with one-click onboarding: The AI makes the process of providing crucial information fast and easy.
- Compatibility testing: TheAI matches members profiles based on experts’ formulated questionnaires that sniff out 16 personality traits. This compatibility-matching feature has been a game-changer and generates recommendations just in a couple of minutes.
- Identity verification: Member profiles are evaluated on a regular basis to ensure that they are genuine. Using AI, we have introduced selfie verification in real-time. This guarantees that the person in the profile photo is the same person in real life.
DigiconAsia: Do you think the future of matchmaking will be largely driven by these advanced technologies?
Pawan: Matchmaking websites in India have become hi-tech, so AI, ML and robotics are definitely going to be the future of the industry due to the various specifications and enhancements they have brought.
Through proprietary AI algorithms, such services tap on metrics such as education, language, personal interests, career, family, lifestyle factors and so on, to shortlist potential partners.
DigiconAsia: How are these technologies helping users to use social media to shortlist candidates?
Pawan: Our service has proved itself unique via various proprietary features that leverage existing social media profiles to verify candidates and add to the bio data available for scrutiny. The three social media platforms offer different facets of information that members can check:
Facebook: Personal information and friends lists can provide useful biodata
LinkedIn: Education and career information can be exchanged in a more significant way
Instagram: Personal photos and information on various interests help people exchange social information
It is common for our users to cross-check social media profiles to garner trust and faith in one another.
DigiconAsia: How do you use chatbots to enhance the matchmaking experience? What other use cases can they be put to?
Chatbots are generally used in situations where customers or users make many transactions of the same type over long durations.
Examples could be:
- Requesting customer service when ordering food online
- Receiving answers for questions on a SaaS platforms or services
- Paying regular utility bills
- Making a restaurant reservation
- Scheduling a meeting on a shared calendar
In the case of matchmaking in India, customers can use chatbots to receive guidance on the website’s interactive features or user interface if they are in doubt. One-liner messages can also be relayed between members through peer-to-peer conversations facilitated through chatbots. In future, chatbots may be used to drive conversations between members whose interactions have slowed down.
DigiconAsia thanks the two co-founders for spending time on the interview.