A new service allows cellphone users to answer the one question that has plagued us since the first single-cell organism gazed upon its reflection in the primordial soup and wondered: "Am I hot or not...?"
Launched last week by Cointel in association with a mobile services company LuckyMobile, Rate `n Date allows interested people to MMS photos of themselves to email@example.com. Photos are then rated by other cellphone users on a scale of one to 10.
Rate `n Date is now available as a generic white labelling application through Cointel. White labelling basically refers to a service or application branded in the name of an organisation and provided anonymously for the clients of that organisation by a third party.
"Cointel is one of South Africa`s largest wireless application service providers (WASPs) and the first in South Africa to white-label the service from LuckyMobile and market it," commented Janene Matsukis.
A unique feature of Rate `n Date is that the service allows one to chat via SMS to other people who have submitted their photos for rating. According to Tracey Cohen, Marketing Director of Lucky Mobile: "Literally millions of ratings have been received since Rate `n Date was first launched two months ago."
After sending their photos via MMS to firstname.lastname@example.org, Lucky Mobile sends a WAP link to new users` cellphones enabling them to log onto Rate `n Date whenever they wish to view their current scores.
The cost of each MMS sent varies according to the user`s cellular network. Minimal WAP charges apply to view other people`s photos while each SMS sent to other registered users costs R2.
"Technology impacts every aspect of our lives and it`s natural that people should be using technology to find the perfect partner. Internet dating and now cellphone dating enables one to interact with so many more potential partners than our parents would ever have been exposed to," said Cohen.
It is also fun and easy to rate people without registering for Rate `n Date. Simply surf to www.ratendate.co.za using your WAP-enabled cellphone or your computer and spend many happy hours rating people from one to 10 while looking for next year`s Valentine.
The only requirement to actively participate in the Rate `n Date service is for users to be 18 years or older. Profiles will be made available for public viewing.