UNITED STATES—In 2019, three friends launched LuckyCrush, a video chat site for virtual flirting with random strangers, through live video chat. Basically, men are connected with random women and women are connected with random men, through live video chat. The chat can last a few seconds or several hours but instantly ends when one of the partners clicks “next” which instantly connects them to new random partners. After just a year, the site has more than 10M users across the world and experienced a boost in their growth during and after the COVID19 global lockdown. The site, which was initially launched as an experiment (a ‘joke’, as its founder says), is now a profitable startup company with an ever-growing community. We tried and tested LuckyCrush for you. Here is what we found.
What is LuckyCrush?
LuckyCrush is a random video chat site like Omegle or Chatroulette. Two users are randomly connected together through live video chat. They can click “next” at any time to switch to a new random partner. The difference here is that men are only connected with women and women are only connected with men, like in a giant online speed dating session. If it sounds like a dating site, this is clearly not the case. On LuckyCrush, rules are simple: you are here to experience online and ephemeral flirtations. There is no meeting in real life at the end. Users are completely anonymous and don’t share any personal information nor contact details. The goal of LuckyCrush is to allow users to start a virtual flirtation with a real partner, through live video chat, in just one click, while remaining anonymous and in the comfort of their home. If this sounds like a concept from Japan or South Korea (where virtual dating is very advanced), this concept was actually launched by three French engineers in mid 2019. The site experienced fast community growth initially, but it’s during the first COVID19 global lockdown that they saw their daily traffic increase by 500%. The site now has a 10M user community from more than 100+ countries across the globe.
The site and the video call features are available on desktop and mobile, which means you can start a chat in one click from any browser, whether you are on your desktop or smartphone, without downloading an app. There is also a registration regulation that ensures there are always approximately 50% of men and 50% of women online at any time. In terms of site rules, it’s quite free. The only thing is that members can’t exchange personal details so that it remains safe and anonymous, and members can’t ask or offer payments from other members. In terms of process, to start on LuckyCrush, you are only asked to select your gender and click « start ». A native popup from your browser will ask you to enable your webcam and microphone. Once you’ve accepted, the site will instantly match you with a random stranger of the opposite gender in a few seconds. After a few minutes chatting, the site will require you to register to keep chatting with people on the site.
In terms of video call quality, it’s quite impressive to have something similar to a FaceTime chat but on a browser. Sometimes the video call freezes or the cam quality is not great, but it depends on you and your partner’s Internet connection speed. For an optimal experience, you should prefer a high speed wifi network on your mobile or even a ethernet cable on your computer.
Who are LuckyCrush members?
When testing LuckyCrush, we chatted with different people – guys as well as girls. We asked them what they were enjoying so much on LuckyCrush and whether they were experiencing unusual encounters (because we are sure you can run into really crazy people when being randomly matched with your partners). Here is the interesting feedback of Luke, a 32 year-old sales representative working in an energy company in Germany:
“Every (click on) ’next’ is a new surprise. Sometimes it’s boring and you recheck ‘next’ in the second, sometimes you find a great partner and spend the night with them and before you know it it’s morning time. I met hundreds of girls from many different countries on LuckyCrush. Its fleetingness and the fact it never leads to something in real life is often frustrating, but it’s always a great time. The fact the relationship doesn’t continue in real life gives a certain freedom. We don’t spend hours trying to approach each other with social precautions. It’s quite straightforward and we quickly discuss our personal lives and other intimate things. At the beginning I was connecting to the site when I was alone at home. I ended up making sure to be alone at home every night to spend the evening on LuckyCrush. I like the auto-moderation system and I know other members do too. This clearly gives a safety feeling because if you experience anything wrong on the site with someone, you just have to report the person. If the person is reported by other members too, they will get banned. The site is always freed of undesired members, which clearly increases the trust and confidence when the chat with a new partner starts (which is the most exciting part… the video loading icon meaning a video chat with a random partner will start in a second…).”
The site guarantees that there are always approximately 50% of girls and 50% of guys online on the site at any time. According to the LuckyCrush team, they manage to do this through registration regulation and high investment in advertising to women, pointing out the site is based on anonymity, safety and auto-moderation. We could indeed register as a male without any restriction and we didn’t wait before being paired up with a female partner. To understand what made women enjoy this experience, we had a chat with Lara, a 29 year-old fitness coach from Italia:
“Women have the power! I’m kidding, everyone has the power on LuckyCrush. The power to get anyone banned in case of rude or offensive behavior. Personally, this quickly made me less suspicious when chatting with a new partner. Now I feel pretty comfortable when the chat starts and I see my new partner’s face. Anyway, a simple click on ‘next’ allows you to instantly end the chat forever so it’s not a big thing if there is no match with your partner. I meet very different kinds of people on LuckyCrush. Some of them are looking for fun with a random partner, others are here to chat with girls from different countries (cultural differences often lead to funny things when flirting) others are a little bit too hot (or at least… too fast) and send “plz show tits” before they even say “hello”. I met guys of all ages. I was initially looking for guys of the same age as me and I ended up appreciating chats with younger or older guys.”
It’s not surprising that LuckyCrush experienced such an increase in traffic during and after global lockdown. It offered anyone anywhere the opportunity to keep meeting new people despite lockdowns. What is more surprising, is that even after that, people kept logging in and using it. As if it were easier than real life flirting. We can easily wonder if flirting online will not become the new norm in the future.