Tinder, an app for meeting people, is all the rage among singles and used by millions of people everyday. But is it really just about meeting people, and what is it doing to modern dating?
A playful dating game really, or more specifically, my friends use it as either a hookup app or an addicting past time where within a simple swipe of the finger you can open, or close doors to potential suitors (or one night stands).
It’s like the smartphone ‘circle yes or no’ of note-passing, except not.
Tinder works by referencing your geographic location and then filters matches accordingly. When you open the app you immediately see someone’s picture, name, and age based on their proximity to you. Now the choice is yours: You can swipe to the right for yes, or left for no. And let the games begin.
A match (direct communication) can only happen when someone you’ve liked has liked you too, and if that magic key is turned, the message format opens up, much like a text message. The playful interface really boils down to a game of Hot or Not.
Their tag-line is as vague and off course as the apps original purpose: “Tinder is how people meet. It’s like real life, but better.” Since it’s inception, just 16 months ago in September 2012, the app is used by millions every day. The company claims that on on average, it processes 50,000 requests per second, and 4.5 million matches a day.
Online dating is a growing industry–reaching about $1 billion in profit, but how likely are you to meet your soulmate on the flipping screen, and what is Tinder doing to the singles playing field?
It’s as shallow as a dried up puddle, and represents more of a video game than a meeting space. Tinder is just another log fueling our culture of fast pleasure because once you’ve ‘liked’ someone that has slightly struck your interest, you are already forgotten about them and you’re on to the next.
I suppose the app is really just a game, and as mind numbing as a bad cosmetic commercial. But have we gone so deep into virtual reality that Tinder really is “like real life, but better“? Is this future of meeting someone new? Or will user look back and laugh only to file it with Tamagachis or Pet Rocks? But, of course, we are talking about real people.