Dream Lover, a virtual relationship platform that allows users to send texts and receive pictures from professional models, is now supporting bitcoin as a payment option.
A product of the people behind adult entertainment studio Naughty America, Dream Lover follows in the footsteps of its sister website, which began accepting bitcoin in January 2014.
Launched later that year, Dream Lover allows users to spend bitcoin on account credits called Coins that can be used to purchase access to phone numbers assigned to Dream Lover models. Users pay for 30-day access to the phone number and any transaction fees.
Dream Lover CEO Andreas Hronopoulos described the product as one that seeks to capitalize on what he considers the broader trend of startups enabling both real and fantasy online relationships, citing Tinder as an example.
Hronopoulous told CoinDesk:
«We don’t think about it as adult entertainment, we look at it as people have relationships online and this is just an opportunity to have a virtual companion. I think the movie ‘Her’ really hit the nail on the head. People want to have relationships online and this is just the beginning.»
Hronopoulous indicated that models on the website are predominantly female, but that the platform is open to all applicants.
Above all, however, Hronopoulous sought to stress that Dream Lover is not an ‘adult entertainment’ product, but instead a kind of for-profit fantasy social network.
«The purpose of this service isn’t for people to meet,» he continued. «It’s for users to have somebody to communicate with and who better than the pin-up girls of our generation?»
BitPay serves as the transactions processor for the service.
While bullish on the prospect of bitcoin in the adult industry last year, Hronopoulous indicated that he now believes the technology’s broader adoption is likely to happen without the help of adult entertainment.
«Adult entertainment works when you talk about using a medium and having devices which can access it,» he explained. «Bitcoin is something different. I don’t think adult will play a big role in that, I just think it’s another form of payment.»
Conversely, Hronopoulous described virtual reality as perhaps a technology that would be propelled forward by the adult industry. He noted that Naugthy America has gone «back and forth» on bitcoin.
Bitcoin payments, he said, are in the process of being restored on the website, though he did not elaborate more fully.
Still, Hronopoulous lauded bitcoin as a technology, indicating he believes it has a lot to offer in terms of the relative privacy it offers purchasers from third parties.
«I think the idea is strong,» Hronopoulous concluded. «Everything comes out with a bang but things take time to grow.