According to Internet Dating Conference organizer Marc Lesnick, the industry is happy. Over 250 online dating executives attended the 8th annual iDate show at the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills, where the subject was focused on mobile dating.
I had the opportunity to interview Robinne Burrell, Director of Mobile Products at Match.com; Mark Brooks, editor of Online Personals Watch; Monica Ohara, Director of Marketing for SpeedDate, and Joel Simkhai, founder of Grindr about their mobile dating services.
Julie Spira is an online dating expert and bestselling author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Visit her at CyberDatingExpert.com and facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert
Just in time for Social Media Week we are proud to present our Top Ten favorite mobile dating applications at CyberDatingExpert.com
The year 2010 will go down in history for mobile dating becoming mainstream with many of the traditional online dating sites launching their apps. ?A Juniper research study estimates that mobile dating will be a 1.4 billion dollar industry by 2014. ?According to a Ground Truth report, the number of visitors to mobile dating sites increased this past summer by 92 percent from the first week in June to the last week in July. Here’s our list of some of the best mobile dating apps worth downloading.
1. ?Meet Moi - Meet Moi is a location-based mobile dating company which was formed in 2007. In August of 2010, they launched Meet Moi Now, their Android mobile app and became the first matchmaking service to integrate with Facebook. You can sign up for their basic service for free to create your profile, browse profiles, send winks, respond to received messages, and receive unlimited SMS alerts.?They update your location in real-time. When a match is nearby, you get an alert on your phone.
2. ?Match Mobile -?Match.com, who celebrated their 15th anniversary this year, ?launched Match Mobile in 2007. They added their iPhone app in 2009, and their mobile dating service is now also available on the Android, Blackberry and Palm platforms. Users can download Match.com apps to access the Match.com service. Match claims that close to 10% of their users access their site solely from a mobile device. Their mobile users are twice as engaged versus those who use Match on their desktop computers. Members can browse singles, send winks, and upload photos directly from their mobile phone to their profile. A subscription is required to send and receive emails.
3. ?Speed Date - SpeedDate.com launched their mobile app this year and has over 1.5 million unique iPhone installs. Over half of them join their service after their installation. Singles can finger-swipe through millions of profiles, choose who they would like to meet and then start conversations via email.? Advanced filters allow users to narrow searches based on various criteria such as age and location. In addition, a unique tagging feature ensures all favorite member profiles are stored and easily accessible.
4. ?Zoosk ?- Zoosk’s iPhone dating application is the largest dating app in the U.S. It’s also popular in other countries such as Australia, France, Italy and Spain. Users are awarded coins when they download the iPhone app. Their service allows you to chat and flirt wherever you go and you’ll receive a mobile alert when someone flirts with you.? Zoosk won the award for the best Mobile Dating Site at the Internet Dating Conference this year and has consistently been a #1 dating app in the iPhone Store with over 1 million downloads. All of the ?functionalities from their website are available on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Their GPS location tagging capabilities are a feature you’ll want to try out. They will be launching an Android app in the near future.
5. SKOUT - I’ve been following Skout since they laaunched the first-ever dating app for the iPhone in 2008. ?In July, 2010, ?they hit one million users. They have one of the most popular iPhone apps and operate like a flirting and hook-up GPS. Their iPhone app identifies singles in your immediate vicinity and gives you the opportunity to flirt and meet up with them. Though the app is free to use, members have the option of purchasing virtual gifts, premium memberships, or sending “wink bombs” which reach up to 500 potential sweethearts in your area at once.
6. ?eHarmony – Just in time for their 10th anniversary celebration, eHarmony recently launched their iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch service this summer. The app was listed in the Top Ten Free Apps in the App Store and they’ve had over 100,000 downloads. ?Members can view matches, receive match updates, upload photos from their iPhone, and communicate with their matches.
7. Are You Interested – AreYouInterested.com from Snap Interactive?is an?online dating site, mobile dating application, and Facebook app for?single men and?women with over 13 million members. Their service integrates their iPhone and Facebook applications together so you can browse photos of singles in your area and click on who you like. Their buzz feed shows you what people are up to in real time.
8. Grindr – Just this week, Grindr, the world’s largest all-male mobile location-based networking service, announced that it has reached more than one million subscribers. On a daily basis, Grindr has about 250,000 active users who log on approximately eight times per day. The average Grindr user spends an average of 1.3 hours each day using the app. ?These numbers are huge. On a weekly basis, they have about 400,000 users. This amounts to about 600,000 users per month. ?Grindr is available on the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. They have plans to expand their service on the Blackberry in the near future.
9. Flirtomatic – Mobile social network Flirtomatic is known as the world’s number one flirting company. Based in the UK, they have over 3 million global members. The good news for U.S. mobile daters, is their membership in the states recently surpassed 1 million users. ?You can set up your profile in about 20 seconds. Their service allows members to search, chat, send rapid messages, rate members and find user generated content about flirting and dating. Flirtomatic has its own?virtual currency called “Flirt Points”?that members can use to buy premium services, such as?virtual goods.? Their service is available on the iPhone and Android platforms.
10. Four Square – I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention location based social networking site Four Square. They aren’t a dating app, but we love them anyway and it’s surely fun to check in. ?You’ll need to be friends with other members on the service to see who’s around when you check in. If you’ve had a crush for a while on someone and you see they’re at the local coffee shop or at the same venue, you can use this as a chance to say hello and get to them better in real life. Available on the iPhone, Android, Blackberry, and Palm.
JDate Mobile -?Launched this year,?JDate Mobile allows their members to receive real-time mobile alerts notifying them when they receive new messages, when another member views their profile, adds them to their hot list and more for free. JDate Mobile features are 100% available for free to their subscribers. Available on the iPhone and Android. Non-paying members of JDate can download the app for free, but ?have limited access to JDate Mobile.
Christian Cafe -?With over 400 new sign ups daily,?Christian Cafe is now available for iPhone users. Their iPhone mobile dating app is fully integrated with their website and singles can sign up for a free trial, create a basic dating profile, search, see who is online in your area and communicate via email and winks. They are presently in development with their Android app.
Do you have a favorite mobile dating app that you’d like to share with us? We’d like to hear from you.
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