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Tinder Launches New Safety Feature for LGBTQ Travelers

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Tinder Travel Alert Screen Capture
Image: Tinder

Tinder has announced a new safety feature for those in the LGBTQ community who are traveling abroad.

The new “Traveler Alert” feature allows users to hide their profiles on the app when they feel unsafe traveling in countries and regions that criminalize same-sex acts, according to website Lifehacker. International travelers are subject to the laws of other countries, so it puts LGBTQ folks especially at risk. There are currently 69 countries that persecute same-sex acts, and nine of these allow the death penalty to be imposed, including Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Tinder’s website stated: “It’s important to exercise extra caution if you choose to connect with new people in these countries - as some law enforcement have been known to use dating apps as tools for potential entrapment. Some countries have also recently introduced laws that criminalize communications between individuals on same-sex dating applications or websites and even aggravate penalties if that communication leads to sexual encounters.”

The Meet Group Announces Updates To MeetMe App

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MeetMe adds 1 on 1 video calling
Image: The Meet Group

The Meet Group, the Pennsylvania-based parent to several dating and social networking apps, unveiled two new sets of features for its flagship dating and livestreaming platform, MeetMe.

The first updates focus on making MeetMe a safer, more welcoming and more inclusive space. The iOS and Android versions of the app now have a more prominent Report Abuse button - the largest, according to CEO Geoff Cook, seen in any major livestreaming app so far. When a user taps the button, a screengrab is automatically taken and sent to the company’s moderation team. The moderators can immediately review both the screengrab and the active livestream in order to take appropriate action.

Tinder Unveils its New “Lite” App

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Tinder has unveiled its new streamlined app after announcing its debut earlier this year. Tinder Lite will be available as a separate app for Android phones and can be purchased through Google Play.

The new Lite app was designed specifically for users in countries and regions where Internet connectivity is slow and most people have lower-cost phones. According to Tinder CEO Elie Seidman, who spoke at the 2019 Rise Tech conference in Hong Kong in mid-July, the new app “would run faster, consume less battery and reduce network usage by about 20 percent,” as reported by The Jakarta Post.

Bumble Introduces In-App Video and Voice Calls

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Leading the way for major dating apps, Bumble launched an exciting new feature for its platform: in-app video and voice calls. It will soon be available in Bumble Bizz, Bumble BFF and its signature dating app.

The new feature is similar to Facetime, in that you can voice or video call a match directly from within the Bumble app. The ability to make an in-app call will be available only once a match has been made, according to Tech Crunch. In other words, there must be a double opt-in so users won’t be getting unsolicited calls from random users.

Once Will Display Users’ Attractiveness Ratings In The Name Of ‘Transparency’

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Dating App Once

Dating apps have long used hidden scoring systems to rank users’ desirability. Tinder made headlines in 2016 when then-CEO Sean Rad revealed to Fast Company that Tinder users were assigned and matched according to an internal “Elo score.” Tinder has since retired the Elo score in favor of an updated algorithm, but it is not the only dating service that issues users an attractiveness rating.

UK-based app Once is one such service. Not only does Once use an attractiveness scale of one to five to guide its matching system, the company recently emailed its users to tell them their scores.

Coffee Meets Bagel Introduces ‘Unlimited Takes’ and ‘Priority Likes’

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Unlimited Takes and Priority Likes for CMB Subscribers

Coffee Meets Bagel launched in 2012 as a slower-paced alternative to the superficial, swiped-based apps that dominate the dating market. Now seven years into the business, co-founders and sisters Arum Kang, Dawoon Kang and Soo Kang are seeking new ways to differentiate and monetize their product.

2018 saw big changes and big victories come to Coffee Meets Bagel. After revamping its paid subscription services, the company raised $12 million in its series B and doubled its number of users. A premium monthly membership offers users activity reports about their matches (a “bagel,” in the app’s parlance), read receipts and 6,000 beans (the in-app currency) every month. At the time of its launch, Dawoon Kang told VentureBeat the membership was the company’s “first step toward a freemium subscription model.”