In five years, the current proliferation of digital matchmaking services will lead to millions of lackluster wedding toasts, but – for now at least – the mobile-ization of romance is a boon for busy guys. Unfortunately, apps are flooding the market and Silicon Valley has discovered marketing speak, meaning its harder than ever to tell what works from what merely exists. Here are the only five dating apps you need to know about. Our recommendation? Choose one that works and stick with it. Your love life shouldn't be a video game.
A location-based dating app, Tinder works in tandem with your Facebook account, snatching info (friends, likes, etc.) and sorting matches based on shared friends and interests. Well, that's the pitch anyway. In reality, though, the app is more about convenience and aesthetics than building social connections: It flings you photo after photo of potential matches near your location and lets you swipe right to like them or swipe left if you don't find them attractive. If someone also swipes you to the right, a chat box pops up and you can begin conversing. It's extremely addictive, as flicking face after face makes one feel oddly omnipotent – it's no wonder the app is incredibly popular. Matches do arise and, as with every site, have the chance to be casual flings or something more serious. However, the app is littered with thousands of spam bots (and professionals) and feels a bit more like a mobile game than an authentic forum for meeting people.