Online Dating from A to Z: Awesome Apps

Welcome to the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. This month I’ll be working my way through the alphabet, one day at a time, on the subject of Online Dating. If you’ve never visited my blog before, I’m happy you’re here! Be sure to check out my previous A to Z Challenge posts and the books that were inspired by them for more alphabetical fun.

A is for Apps

So let’s get tapping!

If you’re currently alive and of dating age, you’ve probably heard of a handful of dating apps like Tinder, Grindr, Bumble, OkCupid, PlentyOfFish, and maybe even Coffee Meets Bagel (my personal favorite in the “Nonthreatening Names” category), The League, Happn, and Zoosk.

But did you know that there are THOUSANDS of dating apps out there?!

As the website Statista (which lists several apps with millions of users that I have never even heard of, including Badoo and Lovoo) notes:

“Online dating is no longer seen as a last attempt for the desperate and lonely to find their soul mate. The stigma is beginning to dissipate as an increasing amount of Americans believe that online dating is now socially acceptable. During an April 2017 survey, 84 percent of dating app users stated that they were using online dating services to look for a romantic relationship.”

Back when I first started online dating, apps didn’t even exist. Moreover, dating websites like didn’t exist, either. I actually started online dating in the nerdiest and most stigmatized way possible (circa ~1993): via online message boards.

In the olden days of Online Dating, if you hit it off with someone who was posting on the message boards, you’d hit them up with a more private message via email. After some back and forth in the ol’ inbox, eventually the adventurous online dater would ask to chat with their would-be honey via instant messengers that resembled an early version of iChat. How courtly, how quaint!

When I say that I’m glad to see that the stigma attached to online dating is gone, I’m also glad that the technology behind it has slightly improved – while also staying (somewhat amazingly) much the same. People today can still meet on message boards, level up to email or text messages, and eventually arrange in-person dates.

But now they can also use apps!

What’s an app and why should I care?

So let’s talk dating apps. What are they? How do they work?

Similar to Facebook or Twitter, which are available both as apps (accessible from your smartphone or tablet) and as websites (accessible via your laptop or desktop computer), most dating apps are just mobile-friendly versions of dating websites. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, however, the most popular dating apps help you find dates by matching you up with people in your geographic area, and then allow you to sort the ones you like from the ones you don’t by scrolling through profiles and either swiping right (+) or left (-).

Simple, right?

One of the most frequently asked questions is “Which online dating app is the best?” And the answer is… that depends.

What are you looking for? Love? Marriage? A one-night stand? Friendship with benefits? Different dating apps are geared towards different types of relationships, so it’s important to be honest about what you really want. If you’re only looking for sex, don’t pretend otherwise. It’s rude, dangerous, and ultimately really disrespectful to the people who are looking for something more. Honesty really is the best policy, because at least 24% of users of online dating apps are just looking for sex, and there are plenty of apps and websites where you can find exactly that.

If, on the other hand, you’re looking for something more serious, you’ll probably want to take a look at – the USA’s biggest dating website – along with Tinder and Bumble. As psychologist Eli Finkel notes, it’s all a numbers game, and you’ll went to cast your net as widely as possible. The goal isn’t to stay on the sites themselves, but to find someone that sparks your interest and then arrange to meet up for coffee or a drink where you can get to know them in person.

And that’s the real beauty of apps: tons and tons and TONS of potential matches to choose from!

Just remember when you’re swiping left and right on various people’s faces that you can’t always judge a book by its cover, and sometimes the most unassuming of profiles can lead to much more than you’d ever guess from a quick glance.

Ready to give dating apps a try?

Then get your swiping finger ready and start looking for love in some of these virtual places:

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Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you back here tomorrow for Blind Dates!

Want more online dating tips?

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  • Writergrrrl

    What a great subject! And I say that as a happily engaged person… but the online dating world fascinates me and I’m looking forward to reading your posts this month.

  • Pamela

    I didn’t realise that there were so many apps now – I remember when it was such a new thing that everyone thought they were going to meet an axe murderer if they met up with someone they’d found online. I was also horrified to find out recently that there are apps for people who want to cheat on their current partner – awful!!f
    Love your theme and looking forward to what else you share with us all.
    Pamela @ Days of Fun

  • Lindsey

    Thanks for visiting my blog. Sorry you’re working on taxes. That doesn’t sound very fun. I’m not looking for online dating tips these days, but I do hope you’ll have some funny stories to share at some point in the alphabet!

  • Dyanne Dillon

    Any time I start to scoff at online dating, I remember that I met my husband on the phone through a mutual friend (he worked with her in LA and I talked to her frequently because of my job in Nashville and we had even met once). Not so far off! Sounds like a fun topic for the Challenge!

  • Karen

    It’s a whole new dating world. I had no idea there were so many dating apps. I’m not sure I’d know how to navigate things if I was dating now but I agree that it’s good there is no longer a stigma attached to dating apps. Weekends In Maine

  • Red

    HILARIOUS! I mean, I know it shouldn’t be. I know a few people who had success with Match, and 2 cousins who did well through Plenty of Fish. Personally, I actually, In fact, met my husband through his blog!!!

    Back in the day, I tried a radio dating program. I honestly don’t remember how it worked. Three dates and I was out.

  • Morgan

    Online dating….sigh….
    After being single for two years, I might have to jump aboard with it again because I’m not having much luck without it. How do people meet each other without the help of an app or a website?

  • Laura

    What an informative post. I am too married to give the dating apps a try, but I have always thought they sounded like fun. As long as you go in with the attitude that it is for fun.

  • NameMelissa Sugar

    Great post. I had no idea there were so many apps available. Congrats on meeting your husband on one. What if you live in a relatively small town? What are the odds of meeting someone new?

    Melissa @Sugar Crime Scene