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Tinder for Apple TV: Online Dating’s Next Incarnation

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Binging on Netflix has become a social occasion, with friends gathering together to watch their favorite shows and movies in the comfort of home. Now, Tinder has proposed that online dating can be a social occasion, too - and like Netflix, experienced via your TV.

This past December (notably in time for the holidays), the company launched Tinder for Apple TV, which allows you to search for dates on the big screen, presumably with your friends gathered round to comment. The tvOSapp for Apple TV allows you to swipe left and right on potential dates on the big screen to make it a group activity. Perhaps while you’re opening presents or eating turkey and pumpkin pie with your family?

It’s the same Tinder as the version that lives on your phone, but available for display so your friends and family don’t have to squint or pass your phone around to give you their opinions.

“With a new, swipeable remote control and the world’s hottest app now in HD, modern dating is taking a page from the age-old book of matchmaking,” reads the Tinder announcement of the new tvOS app. “Let’s face it—the people who know you best have traditionally had a high rate of success when helping you pick a partner.”

The app works via the trackpad on the Siri remote. Here’s how to set it up, according to Tinder’s website:

1) Go to the App Store on your Apple TV and download Tinder.

2) Follow the instructions on screen to log in.

3) Start swiping. With Tinder on Apple TV, you can:

  • Click the trackpad to view more details about a profile
  • Swipe Left, Swipe Right and Super Like by Swiping Up
  • Shake the remote to Rewind your swipe if you're a Tinder Plus subscriber.

4) When you're done swiping, sign out and give your friends (or sister) a chance to swipe.

Users aren’t able to adjust profile information via the Apple TV app, but they can still make changes in their phone which will reflect on the big screen.

While it’s an interesting idea, and many people do like to swipe together with their friends, this seems too problematic to helpfully assist people who are looking for a long-term relationship. Swiping in front of an audience and looking at photos blown up on your TV leaves room for unwanted criticism and judgment from others, no matter how well-meaning they may be. It turns swiping people into even more of a group sport, rather than a way for one person to truly date and connect on an individual level.

While I give kudos to Tinder for thinking up new ways to engage an audience, the company seems to stray further from helping individuals do anything but continue to swipe. If you’re looking for a real relationship, you might want to pass on Tinder for Apple TV.