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40% of single Japanese men in their 20s have never been on a date, survey says

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40% of single Japanese men in their 20s have never been on a date, survey says

And a lot of 20-something women are yet to go on their first date too, according to government study.

On Tuesday, the Japanese government’s Cabinet Office released a new white paper on gender equality. The wide-ranging study presented a large variety of data about men and women in Japan, one statistic that’s been met with shock is that, according to the study, roughly 40 percent of unmarried Japanese men in their 20s have never been on a single date.

As part of the paper’s overarching goal of clarifying the current societal situation for men and women in Japan, the researchers asked participants in their 20s whether they were married, completely unattached, or had a “lover” (the specific Japanese word, koibito, refers to a romantic, though not necessarily sexual, partner). The responses were:

● Men in their 20s


No spouse or lover: 65.8 percent


Lover: 19.1 percent


Common law spouse: 1.5 percent


Spouse: 13.6 percent

● Women in their 20s


No spouse or lover: 51.4 percent


Lover: 27.3 percent


Common law spouse: 1.4 percent


Spouse: 19.8 percent

That’s a significantly higher proportion of unattached young men than women, and that gap was further reflected when those same demographics were asked how many people they’d ever gone on a date with. Here’s a graph of the responses from men in their 20s, with the solid green line for single men and the dotted one for married men, and the number of dating partners they’ve had along the bottom.

It’s not the most intuitive way of presenting the data, but the gist is this: roughly 40 percent of single men in their 20s who were surveyed have gone on a date with zero people, or, in other words, have never been on a single date in their entire life.

By comparison, the chart for women in their 20s (again with the solid line for singles and the dotted for married women) shows only about 25 percent of young adult women have never been on a date. That may or may not sound like a lot, depending on your image of 20-something romance, but it’s still a lot less than the figure for men.

▼ Surprisingly, about five percent of both married men and women in their 20s in the Cabinet Office’s study have also had zero dating partners, perhaps implying that they met their life partner through a konkatsu (spouse-searching) service.

The question about number of past dating partners was also posed to survey respondents in their 30s and 40s, who were more likely to have at least been on one date than the 20-somethings.

Percentage of respondents who have never been on a date


Women in their 20s: Roughly 25 percent


Women in their 30s: Roughly 22 percent


Women in their 40s: Roughly 12 percent


Men in their 20s: Roughly 40 percent


Men in their 30s: Roughly 35 percent


Men in their 20s: Roughly 22 percent

It’s not clear, though, if the greater dating experience of the older respondents is because their age groups were more romantically active in their 20s than today’s 20-somethings are, or if they too spent their 20s dateless and had their first experience only after their hit their 30s or 40s.

▼ Maybe this dude has always been this dapper, and maybe he was a late bloomer.

Either way, though, 40 percent of men in the 20-29 age bracket having never been on a date feels like a big number. Whenever talking about dating habits in Japan, though, there are some important sociological factors to bear in mind, with the most important being that in Japan, explicitly asking someone out on a date is a bigger, bolder move than it is in many other cultures.

That’s not entirely due to Japanese shyness, either. Japanese society is very group-oriented, and that often extends to social life for college students and relatively new members of the workforce, the two categories many people spend most of their 20s in. In university, many people’s social lives are defined by the campus club or sports team they join, and many companies have drinking parties, employee trips, and other activities that the staff, especially younger members, are expected to participate in. Because there are so many occasions to socialize in a group setting, breaking away from that setting and asking someone out on a date, where it’ll be just the two of you, can carry a sense of more significant, relationship-ready interest than a casual “Let’s just go out to dinner and see if we’re compatible”-style invitation does in other countries. Even when meeting people outside of school or the workplace, Japan has a whole social institution called gokon, basically a group dinner for singles organized either informally by friends or by matchmaking services, where people can become acquainted and litmus-test their compatibility without going on an official “date.”

In other words, part of the reason 40 percent of the 20-something men, and 25 percent of the women, haven’t ever been on even a casual date is because casual dates themselves are less common in Japan, with the “still getting to know each other” phase often taking place at nominally platonic group events instead.

That said, the survey’s five percent of married 20-somethings who somehow got hitched without ever going on a date notwithstanding, ordinarily people do feel like they need to eventually go on a date before getting married. With planned single parenthood not really a thing in Japan and the Japanese government struggling to find ways to increase the country’s birth rate, it’s in the Cabinet Office’s best interest to search for specific answers as to why so few people are dating, and what can be done to help those who are dateless but not by choice.

It’s unfortunate that the survey apparently didn’t ask older respondents how many dating partners they’d had when they were in their 20s, since that would have shed some light on whether or not the large number of dateless young adults is a new phenomenon. As for what should be done, that’s a topic for another day, but maybe fewer high schools forcing students to join extracurricular clubs or flat-out prohibiting dating would at least make it so that young adults who are interested in finding a date aren’t starting off their 20s romantically flat-footed.

Source: Cabinet Office


Top image: Pakutaso


Insert images: Cabinet Office, Pakutaso (1, 2)


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FIFA 23 lets you turn off commentary pointing out how bad you are

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FIFA 23 lets you turn off commentary pointing out how bad you are
A player shouldering the ball



(Image credit: EA)

FIFA 23 might be the best game soccer game yet for terrible sports fans, as it lets you turn off commentary that criticizes your bad playing.

Now that the early access FIFA 23 release time has passed, EA Play and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers can hop into the game ahead of its full release. But as Eurogamer (opens in new tab) spotted, they’ll find a peculiar option waiting for them.

FIFA 23 includes a toggle to turn off ‘Critical Commentary’. The setting lets you silence all negative in-match comments made about your technique, so you can protect your precious ego even when you miss an open goal or commit an obvious foul. The more positive commentary won’t be affected. 

Spare your feelings

A player dribbling the ball in FIFA 23

(Image credit: EA)

The feature looks tailored toward children and new players, who don’t want to have their confidence wrecked within mere minutes of picking up the controller. But even experienced players who just so happen to be terrible at the game might benefit.

It’s not perfect, though. According to Eurogamer, the feature didn’t seem to work during a FIFA Ultimate Team Division Rivals match, with critical comments slipping through the filter. Still, who hasn’t benefited from a light grilling every now and then?

Polite commentary isn’t the only new addition in FIFA 23. It’s the first game in the series to include women’s club football teams, and fancy overhauled animations that take advantage of the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S’s new-gen hardware. EA will be hoping to end on a high, as FIFA 23 will be the last of its soccer games to release with the official FIFA licence.

If disabling critical commentary doesn’t improve your soccer skills, maybe building a squad of Marvel superheroes will. Although you might not do much better with Ted Lasso wandering the pitch.

FIFA 23 is set to fully release this Friday, September 30.

Callum is TechRadar Gaming’s News Writer. You’ll find him whipping up stories about all the latest happenings in the gaming world, as well as penning the odd feature and review. Before coming to TechRadar, he wrote freelance for various sites, including Clash, The Telegraph, and Gamesindustry.biz, and worked as a Staff Writer at Wargamer. Strategy games and RPGs are his bread and butter, but he’ll eat anything that spins a captivating narrative. He also loves tabletop games, and will happily chew your ear off about TTRPGs and board games. 

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Google Pixel 7 price leak suggests Google is totally out of touch

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Google Pixel 7 price leak suggests Google is totally out of touch
The backs of the Pixel 7 and the Pixel 7 Pro



(Image credit: Google)

We’re starting to hear more and more Google Pixel 7 leaks, with the launch of the phone just a week away, but tech fans might be getting a lot of déjà vu, with the leaks all listing near-identical specs to what we heard about the Pixel 6 a year ago.

It sounds like the new phones – a successor to the Pixel 6 Pro is also expected – could be very similar to their 2021 predecessors. And a new price leak has suggested that the phones’ costs could be the same too, as a Twitter user spotted the Pixel 7 briefly listed on Amazon (before being promptly taken down, of course).

Google pixel 7 on Amazon US. $599.99.It is still showing up in search cache but the listing gives an error if you click on it. We have the B0 number to keep track of though!#teampixel pic.twitter.com/w5Z09D28YESeptember 27, 2022

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According to these listings, the Pixel 7 will cost $599 while the Pixel 7 Pro will cost $899, both of which are identical to the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro starting prices. The leak doesn’t include any other region prices, but in the UK the current models cost £599 and £849, while in Australia they went for AU$999 and AU$1,299.

So it sounds like Google is planning on retaining the same prices for its new phones as it sold the old ones for, a move which doesn’t make much sense.


Analysis: same price, new world

Google’s choice to keep the same price points is a little curious when you consider that the specs leaks suggest these phones are virtually unchanged from their predecessors. You’re buying year-old tech for the same price as before.

Do bear in mind that the price of tech generally lowers over time, so you can readily pick up a cheaper Pixel 6 or 6 Pro right now, and after the launch of the new ones, the older models will very likely get even cheaper.

But there’s another key factor to consider in the price: $599 might be the same number in 2022 as it was in 2021, but with the changing global climate, like wars and flailing currencies and cost of living crises, it’s a very different amount of money.

Some people just won’t be willing to shell out the amount this year, that they may have been able to last year. But this speaks to a wider issue in consumer tech.

Google isn’t the only tech company to completely neglect the challenging global climate when pricing its gadgets: Samsung is still releasing super-pricey folding phones, and the iPhone 14 is, for some incomprehensible reason, even pricier than the iPhone 13 in some regions. 

Too few brands are actually catering to the tough economic times many are facing right now, with companies increasing the price of their premium offerings to counter rising costs, instead of just designing more affordable alternatives to flagships.

These high and rising prices suggest that companies are totally out of touch with their buyers, and don’t understand the economic hardship troubling many.

We’ll have to reach a breaking point sooner or later, either with brands finally clueing into the fact that they need to release cheaper phones, or with customers voting with their wallets by sticking to second-hand or refurbished devices. But until then, you can buy the best cheap phones to show that cost is important to you.

Tom’s role in the TechRadar team is to specialize in phones and tablets, but he also takes on other tech like electric scooters, smartwatches, fitness, mobile gaming and more. He is based in London, UK.

He graduated in American Literature and Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. Prior to working in TechRadar freelanced in tech, gaming and entertainment, and also spent many years working as a mixologist. Outside of TechRadar he works in film as a screenwriter, director and producer.

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DisplayMate awards the “Best Smartphone Display” title to the iPhone 14 Pro Max

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DisplayMate awards the “Best Smartphone Display” title to the iPhone 14 Pro Max

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