love beeper
n. A device that comes in "male" and "female" versions and that beeps if another person with an opposite sex beeper comes within range. (Also: love bleeper, lovegety.)

Example Citation:
A supermarket chain unveiled its latest weapon in the battle for customers yesterday. Sainsbury is appealing directly to shoppers' hearts by handing out 'love beepers' so they can 'check out their perfect partner' in the aisles.
—Clare Garner, "Check It out: Shoppers Are Issued with Patented Mate-Detector," The Independent, November 6, 1999

Earliest Citation:
Lonely hearts are prowling the streets of Japan, armed not with romantic haiku poems or long sultry looks, but with the ultimate matchmaking tool of the electronic age.

The love beeper.

While the real name of the gadget ''Lovegety'' might not be so fetching, the toy's makers and the 400,000 souls who have bought one already are hoping it'll open the door to romance. The Lovegety a rather straightforward mix of ''love'' and ''get'' is an oval disc that fits in your hand. It's carried on forays into crowded places and sends out different signals, depending on the setting.

When someone of the opposite sex carrying a Lovegety comes into range, the two machines beep or flash. Then it's up to the would-be lovers to seek each other out or run the other way.

The device, which came out in February, has three settings for favorite activities: ''karaoke'' for romantic crooners, ''chat'' for those who want to talk, and ''friends'' for something, well, more intimate.
—Chisaki Watanabe, "Beeper Helps Japanese Seek Mates," Associated Press Online, June 1, 1998

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