While over 100 companies in the US offered speed dating through online registration during the growing of the Internet, between 20 three large speed dating companies emerged with a national footprint in the US, with events in over 50 US cities: Hurrydate, 8Minute Dating and Pre-Dating.
In the UK, there are two companies that run events in more than twenty cities: Speed Dater and Slow Dating.
Speed dating is a formalized matchmaking process which has the purpose of encouraging eligible singles to meet large numbers of new potential partners in a very short period of time.
There are many speed dating events now in the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States.
Requirement for each event vary with the organizer.
If there is a match, contact information is forwarded to both parties.
Contact information cannot be traded during the initial meeting, in order to reduce pressure to accept or reject a suitor to his or her face.
Speed dating, as two separate words, is often used as a generic term for similar events.
It is not known when speed dating was first carried out, but there were speed dating events in the London area in the mid-1970s.
Specific age range based on gender is a common restriction for events.
Many speed dating events are targeted at particular communities: for example, LGBT people, polyamorists, Some feel that speed dating has some obvious advantages over most other venues for meeting people, such as bars, discotheques, etc.
On the other hand, feedback and gratification are delayed as participants must wait a day or two for their results to come in.
The time limit ensures that a participant will not be stuck with a boorish match for very long, and prevents participants from monopolizing one another's time.
Usually advance registration is required for speed dating events.