New iPhone app determines sexual compatibility

2 Jun 2010

A new iPhone app from developer MEDL Mobile helps men and women determine prospective partners based on categories of likes and dislikes but could land the app creator in trouble if things go awry.

The app, according to blog site Mashable, has apparently passed through Apple’s rigid approval process for its App Store and is quite similar to the BUMP app which lets users exchange contact information by bumping their phones, only in this case the users ‘Boink’ their phones together.

The MEDL app then goes through the users’ likes and dislikes – keeping these preferences private – and lets the users know if they would be good together in the bedroom.

It then gives them recommendations like “Drop what you are doing and get to a hotel right now” or “Turn and run away.”

Users can also publish their count of ‘boinks’ on Twitter or Facebook, if they wish.

Perhaps it’s the prude in me, but are Apple and the creators of the app not opening themselves up to a potential raft of legal cases if people base potentially life-altering decisions on what their phones tell them? Everything from STDs to pregnancies or worse, assaults, could arise and the tech companies could get the blame.

Think about the case in the States right now where a woman in Utah has taken a case against Google because she took walking directions from Google Maps on her BlackBerry and allegedly was directed onto a busy motorway and injured when struck by a speeding car.

The app from MEDL sounds fun and could be very popular but I think there’s room for plenty of hot water – and I’m not talking Jacuzzis – if people blame their bad decisions on a phone app rather than their basic instinct and common sense.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years