People looking for love in lockdown have been put off dating someone because of that person’s poor internet connection, new research has found.
One in six said they had thought twice about starting up a relationship with someone who had a bad broadband connection because they couldn’t get to know them properly.
The findings are part of a study, by broadband firm Zen Internet, which looked into the video calling habits of UK adults since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
The research found that despite these issues, many have used online dating for the first time since the initial lockdown last year, with 21% of those asked saying they had tried a video date for the first time and 13% confirming that they planned to have a video call date with someone on Valentine’s Day.
Ending relationships via video call was found to be on the rise too, according to the figures, with 15% of those asked saying they had broken up with someone on a video call since March 2020.
The study of more than 2,000 UK adults also found that more than two-thirds have spent time catching up with loved ones using video calling apps since the first lockdown, with many being introduced to the technology for the first time.
But many reported suffering a number of online mishaps when speaking to others – 62% said their internet connection had failed them when trying to speak to a date, and 54% said it had happened when they were speaking to family.
Richard Tang, chairman and founder of Zen Internet, said: “Despite the pandemic and ongoing lockdown restrictions across the country, we are a resilient nation and people have found new ways to seek out that special someone.
“However, a poor connection can be damaging to relationship building, particularly for those in the first stages of trying to get to know each other.
“For most, video calls have become an essential way of communicating regularly with loved ones.
“Whether it be online quizzes, virtual cocktail tasting experiences or film watch parties, the internet has been crucial in spending quality time together, or even for newly dating, highlighting the importance of having a fast and reliable broadband connection.”