The first speed-dating event took place at Peet’s Café in Beverly Hills in late 1998.
There have been several studies of the round-robin dating systems themselves, as well as studies of interpersonal attraction that are relevant to these events.
As reported by the BBC in the Science of Love, it only takes between 90 seconds to 4 minutes of face-to-face interaction to determine attraction, which gives speed dating an advantage over online dating.
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.
Men and women are rotated to meet each other over a series of short "dates" usually lasting from three to eight minutes depending on the organization running the event.
At the end of each interval, the organizer rings a bell, clinks a glass, or blows a whistle to signal the participants to move on to the next date.