Online dating has evolved to a new level in the past few years with the latest slew of dating apps that have not only demystified dating, but have made it fun. Online dating has surpassed the real deal – with statistics showing that out of 54 million single Americans, over 40 million have tried it. It has become a common place to see singles waiting for their blind “online” date at bars, swiping away on their Tinder app while they wait. We decided to go undercover and check out the best best dating apps out there – whether you are looking for a laugh or seriously want to settle down, there are plenty of options to chose from and no more taboos to get in the way. Let’s face it – everyone is online and since the advent of social media, pretty much everyone is connecting – and the majority are hitting the single apps – so no need to be shy anymore, or spend a Friday night on your own.
The Untitled’s top dating apps & online sites
This has got to be one of the more popular and fun apps out there for dating. Tinder connects via your Facebook profile and you get to decide who you like out of the 1000’s of potential suitors out there within 1 mile to 100 miles from your current location. If you are both interested and “like” each other based on your profile photos and mutual interests than you are “matched” and get to chat – and wherever else that may lead you. Everything is done anonymously – although they have to be able to see your first name and whatever profile images you select from your Facebook or Instagram photos. You can also add a few lines of text about yourself, although what is fun about this app it that it is based more on the idea that “a picture says 1000 words…” Not only is it fun swiping through the photos, it becomes highly addictive! Also, it feels like you just won a round of poker when you hit a “match”, as it is all rather random – which definitely adds to the experience. The other advantage is that you can see which mutual Facebook friends you have – which gives you a head start on who to message for more info if you are really interested. The New York Times says, “The application is clearly addictive.” and New York Magazine says “Everyone I know is suddenly talking about it.” Definitely worth having a go, although be warned, many also consider it more of a “hook-up” app, and apparently fewer people are interested in meeting in person than some other dating apps or sites.
As one of the highest rated dating apps available, OKCupid is an online site as well as an app. It has a very Facebook-style “social media” feel with the setup of photos and profile options. It presents 100’s of questions about your personality in multiple choice format – allowing you to see how well matched you are with potential singles using their “matching algorithms”. You can also rate profiles and save favorites, and the paid version lets you view profiles without them knowing you have visited. The site lets you connect via Facebook and “promote” yourself on their platform for higher visibility. This site comes off as a more modern version of online dating than say, Match.com (which owns the site), and the users seems to be highly creative, younger and trendier than the more traditional site. The other advantage is that it is free to use! The paid version, which has no advertising and allows you more anonymity and advanced choices, is very reasonably priced at $14.99 / month. You definitely get more people here interested in meeting in person than an app only platform like Tinder, although the site still crawls with dudes looking to “hook-up”.
Launched in 1995, Match.com pioneered the Internet dating industry. Today the site and app serve millions of singles in 24 countries. Overall, the users on this site seem more serious about dating and finding a serious relationship, if that is what you are looking for. Available as an app or online, it gives you access to profile sorting options such as Christian Dating, Jewish Dating, Asian Dating, Black Dating, Senior Dating, and Gay & Lesbian Dating. You can search free through all of their profiles before you sign up. There is high volume on the site overall – although users are perhaps slightly more traditional types, and the setup for profiles and user platform comes off as a lot more dated than some of the newer options. Worth a try if you want to settle down, though – the rate of real relationships resulting from Match is quite high, although setting up your profile is far more time consuming than you would expect. Also, many singles will go to the length of getting professional profile pictures taken as dating is a rather serious affair on this site.
4. Hot or Not
One of the top 20 free iTunes apps as of December 2013, Hot or Not, will raise your temperature. Hot or Not began as a rating site that allowed users to rate the attractiveness of photos submitted voluntarily by others. “Get in. Get seen. Get fans! Check out if you are Hot, find interesting people around you and chat with them.” Considered to be one of the most popular online communities with over 190 million members, it goes something like this: 1) Check out how hot you are & get your score 2) Find out who is hot around you. 3) Like your Facebook friends and their friends. 4) Chat with interesting people around you.
The concept is very similar to Tinder but without the style or edge. You have the option to sign in with Facebook or create a new profile via an email address, and you can connect and chat to other users on the app once you have both deemed each other “hot”. It comes off as very basic, doesn’t allow you to edit your photos, and has none of the fun of Tinder swiping. Despite being a popular choice, it lacks much umph – we say “not”.
“Badoo is a social network where you can meet new people.” Founded in 2006, with over 180 million users, the free app promotes chatting, making friends, sharing interests, and dating. It has been listed as one of the top 10 apps in the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Canada. You can use it on your iPhone, iPod Touch and computer and, based on your location, it finds people for you to connect to. A Cambridge University study claimed the website has lax privacy practices; it has also been reported that numerous Badoo profiles have been created without people’s consent. In April 2012, the company entered into a marketing agreement with Hot or Not to display its members in the companies service. Although immensely popular, don’t say we didn’t warn you. Try at your own risk.
“Lulu is the first-ever network to unleash the value of girl talk and empower girls to make smarter decisions — starting with relationships.” The girl-power app let’s you rate the guys you date and share your experiences dating them with other girls anonymously. “Get the scoop on who’s charming, who’s a catch, and who’s crushable.” Plus get dating advice from “The Dude,” a brutally honest guy who’s been there. This app is worth checking out before you ever consider dating someone you know on Facebook! The app goes through all of your male Facebook friends or others you manually enter and not only rates them but includes insider experience from other women who have dated them. Aside from the obvious ratings on a scale of 1-10 of how worthy a man is to date, you can see personality pros and cons such as #TeddyBear, #Adventerous, #LadiesFirst, #SnuggleMachine, #AddictedToMirrors, #CheaperThanABigMac, #GetsInFights, #HotNCold, #GoneByMorning…. Although you can’t really connect directly through the app with the men featured, it’s definitely worth a look if you want the insider story on dating them.
Noted as more of a “hook-up” app, Blendr advertises, “Chat, Flirt and Meet New People, Find nearby dates with Blendr, the free, socially flirtatious chat-to-meet app”. Blendr uses your mobile device’s location services to connect you with the singles closest to you who share your interests. The application combines GPS location sensing with a social networking framework, to provide users with the opportunity to meet people who are within a close physical proximity. It is compatible with Android, the iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, and Facebook, and was launched by the same company that created Grindr, which focuses more on connecting the gay and bisexual male community.
9. Fast Cupid
According to online site Fast Cupid, “Meeting Interesting People Just Got Easier . This online-only dating site has a growing international audience in over 30 countries. Although free to sign-up, it features a premium service for members that are more serious about dating. You can also filter for “premium only” members to ensure that the matches you see are as serious about dating as you are. Unlike many of the apps, you have to fill out a tag line and profile about yourself to join, which adds to the odds of more serious members. The site also features a “Personality Type Quiz” to determine your compatibility with other members. After filling out the questionnaire, you’ll be diagnosed as one of sixteen personality types which will be measured against the other personality types. You can then determine if the pros of a potential match-up outweigh the cons, in order to make a more educated decision about a member. On the downside, the site interface seems pretty basic, it does not have instant messaging or chatting, and does not have an app version – although it is compatible with mobile devices. If you are serious about dating, it may be worth checking out, as premium membership is also a lot more reasonable than many other sites, at $9.95 per month. Another bonus, there is no advertising on the site.
10. Plenty Of Fish
This dating site and app from Vancouver, British Columbia attracts users worldwide, although it is most popular in Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, Brazil and the United States. The free Plenty Of Fish app also offers premium services, allowing paid users to see when their user profile was viewed or whether a message has been read and/or deleted. They also recently launched a newer dating app titled Passion Match, which is modeled on the left / right swiping “like” method make popular by apps like Tinder. After creating a profile you can filter through local singles you’d like to meet – swipe left to continue searching for a match, and swipe right when you’re interested. If you both “like each other you can use use the chat service to have a conversation.
Location-friendly social app Skout promotes that you can “Instantly meet people near you or around the world. Discover new friends at a local bar or in Barcelona. Start Skouting and find your party, make new friends, or meet new people, anytime, anywhere.” Features include being able to meet people by preference and proximity, chat, see who checked you out, get updates from nearby users, buy and send gifts, save your favorite users, browse profiles and pictures, promote your profile with in-app features, earn points to unlock premium features.
– Have another site or app you think should be on this list or want to share your experiences with our editors? Contact us!
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