New Tinder Stacks App Doesn’t Involve Dating

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Dating app giant Tinder is trying to expand its influence beyond the dating scene. While the dating market has essentially built the app’s user base, Tinder execs feel that moving outside of this niche to include a larger portion of the population will reap some obvious benefits.

Fear not daters, you can still swipe left and right to date people with the original Tinder app. The new app is a totally separate experience, called Tinder Stacks, and it’s basically a social media voting tool. It’s all about group decision-making.

According to an article in The Verge, Tinder works through your iMessage app to allow you to contact multiple friends and choose a bunch of pictures from your phone to send to them. Message recipients will then be able to go through your “stack” of photos and swipe left and right, depending on whether or not they approve of or like each one. (You can also add a question to the stack, such as “which dress makes me look the most sexy?”) As the voting takes place, the sender will be able to see how many likes and skips each image receives.

While Tinder Stacks users could employ the app to choose their dating profile photos, that’s not its intended purpose. Instead, Tinder wants to open up the possibilities, and thinks most people will be using the service to vote on their selfies. For instance, let’s say you’re deciding what shoes to wear to a party, or what kind of cocktail to order, or whether you should choose vanilla or strawberry ice cream. Now, you can message it out to your friends and let them decide. 

iMessage apps are relatively new, and so is iOS10 which is the new platform for iMessage apps. So, we’ll see if Tinder Stacks catches on along with the expected uptick in iMessage users.

It’s a little strange to sell the concept of group decision-making in an app, but I can see the appeal. It’s not necessarily that you can’t decide about a pair of sunglasses, but that you want to share the shopping experience online with friends, or let your circle of people in on your day to day life.

“Group decision-making drama is a thing of the past,” writes Tinder in its announcing the app. “With Tinder Stacks, we’re bringing swiping to everyone, in any scenario.”

This move by Tinder isn’t unexpected. The company has recently said it will be moving into the social space to expand the app’s potential. We’ll see where it decides to go next.