Tinder answered our prayers for some relief from dating discomfiture in the form of a new feature called “Tinder Social,” which introduces platonic group hangouts into the game plan.
With the new extension, users can create groups by adding up to three of their Tinder-using Facebook friends, all of whom must agree to be added. Once created, a status must be chosen, with options including “Watch the game with us” or “Happy hour, anyone?” Your group of up to four can then interact with others with the possibility of merging the two so long as one member from each swipes right.
While the creator of the group can choose to end it at any time, the chat thread will automatically expire by noon the day after the group was created. “Just remember at noon the next day, your group expires, your matches disappear, and your Uber turns into a pumpkin,” Tinder reminds its users in an article on VentureBeat.
The launch of Tinder Social is a clear effort by Tinder to distance itself from its reputation as a hookup app. “The new feature takes the Tinder experience to a new level, offering our users more ways to expand their social circles and interact with potential matches,” said CEO Sean Rad, steering clear of any dating-related rhetoric.
While some users will be swiping to hook up until the end of time, Tinder Social’s friendly angle coincides with a noticeable trend where more college students are actually using the app to find friends.
Of course, Tinder Social does provide more eager users with the opportunity to arrange group sex or group dates, but the new feature more readily accommodates those who are just looking for more friends. In the end, espousing friendship could actually improve the app’s dating traffic considering people with more friends have higher self-esteem and are more likely to go on dates.