Mobile Dating Apps on the Rise

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There’s no doubt about it, mobile dating is on the rise, and poised to take over the traditional online dating industry.

The figures are staggering: mobile dating apps were a billion-dollar industry in 2011, and by 2016, the market is poised to be worth 2.3 billion. This is a huge opportunity for some of the newer dating app developers, and also an opportunity for traditional online dating companies to improve their mobile platforms, as most have been doing the past couple of years.

While many app companies offer free downloads, they make money through advertising deals or through “freemium” services – that is, offering the basic service for free with added “extras” like more matches or instant communication features for a price.

According to an article in The Washington Post, a recent conference in June brought together people from the tech industry to try out different mobile dating apps for a couple of weeks, to see how they fared. The experiences varied for both men and women, with most agreeing that mobile dating offered a more casual dating experience. However, the more a dating app mimicked real life, the more successful the users’ experience with it.

Many daters find a level of comfort in apps that verify through Facebook or other means, for obvious reasons. With online dating, there is a safety factor to consider, especially for women, when you are meeting a complete stranger. There are also plenty of fake dating profiles with traditional sites and some apps, sometimes used to lure unsuspecting singles.

Most mobile apps however are tied to social media accounts like Facebook in order to verify that the dater is a real person. This adds a layer of security that allow users of an app like Hinge to meet someone they don’t know through friends.

Of course, meeting someone through friends is preferable in real life, so it makes sense that it is also preferable in a mobile dating app. Coffee Meets Bagel is an app that provides matches through your Facebook circles – that is, friends of friends - so you have to have a mutual friend in order to date. According to the company, the more mutual friends two singles have, the more likely they are to say yes to a date. In fact, if they have four mutual friends, they are 90% more likely to say yes.

This isn’t a coincidence. Since so many people are online dating, and dating with technology can feel intimidating to many, it makes the experience easier when you have friends in common.

Will newer dating apps come up with even more organic ways of meeting people? Since the mobile dating industry is only getting bigger, it seems the likely choice.

To find a list of popular services that you can use on your phone, please check out our Dating Apps category.