Tinder Update Brings Instagram Into The Mix

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There's no doubt Tinder is the biggest dating app in the game, but even it is not immune to criticism.

More often than not, that criticism takes the form of concerns that the Tinder profile is too minimal, meaning users swipe with their eyes instead of their hearts.

As criticisms go, it's not the most unfounded. Far from it. Serious daters tend to gravitate to services with more thorough profiles, like Match or eHarmony, or even OkCupid, while Tinder gets relegated to the “hookup app” category.

With a couple of new updates, the tide may turn for Tinder. The first is Instagram integration, which allows users to scroll through the Instagram profiles of potential matches within the Tinder app. A high percentage of Tinder users already include their Instagram handles in their profile, so it's a logical move for the app.

With Instagram integration inside Tinder, users can click into each other's Instagram profiles to see the most recent 34 pictures posted. To see more extensive details like comments and likes, they can click directly into a profile. Users who have private Instagram accounts are presented with an option to grant Tinder access without setting the whole profile to public.

At first glance, it's still all about image – Instagram is the king of visual social media, after all. But dig a little deeper and Instagram also offers plenty of details about a person's life, including interests, activities, and personality insights. An Instagram account can provide useful context for a sparse Tinder profile that makes the person behind it more three dimensional.

A second update adds common connection info, allowing you to see if you share mutual friends with a match. "When you're able to assess the degrees of separation between you and an individual,” Tinder cofounder and President Sean Rad told Mashable, “it adds a lot of value in the form of context, trust and everything."

The final update adds an Interests section to the profile, available to both free and paid subscribers. Users can opt to pull their interests directly from Facebook, creating a more well-rounded, accurate Tinder profile.

“This is the first of many steps to take the recommendations engine to the next level and help you assess the person you’re matching with and start those conversations,” Rad told TechCrunch. “If we can provide our users with more relevant information for each connection, we can take them halfway there in terms of getting a conversation going.”