App Store Description: With 30 billion matches to date, Tinder® is the world’s most popular app for meeting new people. Think of us as your most dependable wingmate—wherever you go, we’ll be there. If you’re here to meet new people, expand your social network, meet locals when you’re traveling, or just live in the now, you’ve come to the right place. We’re called “the world’s hottest app” for a reason: we spark more than 26 million matches per day. How many dating apps do that? (from Apple App Store)
APP Store rating: 17+ (Frequent/Intense Mature/Suggestive Themes; Infrequent/Mild Profanity or Crude Humor; Infrequent/Mild Sexual Content and Nudity)
What do parents need to know about the Tinder App?
Virtual Matchmaking: Using location services, the app identifies people nearby and shows photos of individuals. Users can either hit a green heart button or a red X button. Users are notified when someone gives a heart, but not when someone selects the X. Users are anonymous until both like each other, at which time identities are made and users can message each other. The app makes face-to-face meetings easy, due to how locations are revealed, making privacy concerns very real for parents.
Hook Ups? Tinder’s reputation is troubling, touted as one of the best “hook-up” or “one-night-stand” apps on the market. All based on a picture that might not even be real. UKnowKids.com says, “Online predators are an issue on any social media and this one will be no exception. With photos from Facebook on the site [combined with the location information] an online predator would have very little trouble determining the hang out spots of the teen they were after. ” Here is a recent article from Teen Vogue on what they discovered about the app – teens connecting with adults who quickly shift the conversation to sex.
Some Blockage: the app can be effectively blocked with OpenDNS on both Apple and Android devices, using the “dating” category.
April 9, 2019 Update:Snapchat plans to power its Stories within the app, so that users within Tinder could see Snapchat Stories content from friends without ever leaving the app.