From in 1995 to the 21st century of Tinder, Hinge, and Bumble. Social platforms have made a massive imprint on dating and relationships. Dating apps are the new norm. And it seems to be an easy alternative to an awkward first date in person. Just swipe left for no and right for yes.

Credit: Getty Images

The History of Dating Apps

Pioneer of the online dating industry, founded by Gary Kremen in 1995 was about “giving singles the opportunity to express themselves”. Selecting with preferences, photo and writing sections, and unique features, the website morphed into a mobile matchmaker. 

Then there was the launch of Tinder in 2012, leading the way to a new era in the history of dating and romance. It all turned to accessibility in the palm of your hands. People who owned an iPhone quickly became obsessed with the app as soon as its release occurred. You could, and still can find love, sex, casual dating, or just a chat. In the following year, 2013, when Tinder became available on android, is when we really saw a massive shift, a movement. It expanded to more than 70% of smartphones worldwide.

With the digital world seeing its fair share of dating companies come and go, Tinder is one that has moved to the top and has been there ever since. With its casual, efficient, and addictive formula of a little Hot or Not. You can accept or reject just based on what you see. According to a Dating App Report, Tinder has approximately 10.7 million subscribers and 75 million active users. With language support and international markets, you can swipe wherever you are.

Tinder user penetration vs other dating apps (%) | Credit: Civic Science

What’s next?

So, there is no doubt that apps like Tinder have reinvented dating on a global spectrum. It’s transformed the dating scene into an endless virtual marketplace where you can pick and choose based on your preferences. There isn’t a lot of effort required, which is maybe why it’s taken off so perfectly. It may be that people seem to be getting a little lazier in the digital world with a lot of things at the touch of a finger. But what we do know is, that expanding the reach of a single’s social network and facilitating interactions between people who have never met, or likely never would have, is a major perk. So what can we expect to see next?

Credit: Freepik

Well, tech has changed the dating game like no tomorrow. So it’s likely that with more tech there will be more advances and resources for online dating. Think dates in virtual reality, or matching by behavioral patterns, maybe even an end to awkward silences? It’s all very far-fetched, but at the same time, quite believable. You may just hold someone’s hand before you meet them in real life. Or have conversation starters and dating advice fed into your brain to avoid that very customary yet uncomfortable pause. What’s a first date without a slight brain fart though?

There are a lot of possibilities and the potential for the dating world to expand to incredible heights is not off the cards. With robots a common machine predicted in the future, you may just end up dating one. Kidding, I hope not!

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