THE BLOG
01/20/2015 10:17 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Heard of Tinder? It Has Some Competition

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Thomas8047 via Flickr

It all started with a little app called Tinder. Well, not so little anymore -- in just a year Tinder has grown 600 percent. Maybe you have even heard of the latest mobile dating services Hinge and Bumble? Tinder, Hinge, and now Bumble: what makes these dating apps so great?

For one, their match-making system is quick on the draw. Online dating networks like ChristianMingle.com might require a more detailed profile to be 'matched,' these services give you a faster means. Simply swiping right (like) or left (dislike) is the method on all three of these mobile dating free-for-alls. It's easy to have a brush with potential romance -- Tinder doesn't even require a picture.

With the upcoming release of Tinder Plus, the app now has a revenue model. But even before Tinder Plus it was valued at a horrendous $1 billion.

You can also encounter users (at least on Tinder) who are mainly using the app for its social networking capability. People (especially the attractive ones) can promote other social media channels -- like Instagram -- to build their online presence. Some users might swipe right with every single person they see on the service. This way they can build an exceptional amount of matches and potentially gain more attention on their other social channels. This is a tactic that could work on any of these mobile dating platforms.

Tinder even took a clue from Snapchat and released a 'moments' feature in June of 2014. You can send or receive, photos from your matches and choose to swipe right to let them know you 'liked' the photo. After swiping you cannot view the photo again. More potential for naughtiness?

But who are Tinder's competitors, and what do they offer other than quick matchmaking?

Tinder co-founder Whitney Wolfe -- who sued Tinder (and got an undisclosed settlement) for sexist mistreatment -- recently started the dating service Bumble. The service is atrociously similar to Tinder (as is her right as one of Tinder's inventors).

The exception is that the female must initiate conversation first. Fitting, since Wolfe was a victim of misogyny at Tinder. However, this distinguishing feature might also make the app more hetero-normative and unappealing to LGBT users. Another difference is if no conversation is initiated within 24 hours your match "disappears forever." Bumble's time-sensitive and female-centric features separate it from being a Tinder clone.

Hinge is the latest app to join the mobile dating world. It also helps that the CEO Justin McLeod is a looker.

Hinge is an app the tech industry is keeping an eye on. The service has been reviewed well by TechCrunch and has attracted $12 million in funding. Unlike Bumble or Tinder who can match you with any of their users, Hinge runs an algorithm that matches you with friends of (Facebook) friends. Facebook can also be used as a networking tool so Hinge presents some interestingly tailored matches.

It's also important to note that Hinge and Bumble user profiles volunteer a bit more information. This can include job, education, city or height in Hinge's case. With Tinder it's at your discretion what you include in the about me section.

Each of these apps offer the hope of romance or at least a one-night stand. Maybe just use all three to see what you can fish up? But when it comes to users you will find the most fish out in the Tinder sea.