Dating app Hinge, promoted as a “classier Tinder,” debuted Thursday in Toronto, the American product’s second international launch following London, England earlier this month.
Hinge aims to make online dating a more accountable and personal experience, distancing itself from more casual hook up apps like Tinder.
“I find the biggest struggle with my online hookup experience is that people don’t bother to respect me as a human being. Like they just forget that I’m living on 20 years of experiences…. Rather, I feel that all I am to them is just a good looking piece of meat,” says Anastacia Jiang, a sociology student at the University of Toronto, who has registered for the app and plans to use it.
“it seems like it’s (Hinge) trying to establish something deeper than just a physical attraction…. It gives you the means to have a decent connection to the person.”
Data scientists at Hinge say Torontonians have signed up at four times the rate of anywhere else to be alerted to the app’s Toronto launch, according to Hinge community liaison Jean-Marie McGrath.
Hinge says the app works by connecting users to friends of friends, people you might’ve been introduced to in real life anyway. Research done by Hinge shows that the average person only meets three per cent of their friend’s friends naturally.
“We’re told Hinge feels much more like meeting serendipitously through friends at a dinner party” Hinge CEO Justin McLeod says. “Much of that is because Hinge shows transparent profiles such as workplace, education, hometown and only introduces you to people in your social circles. That means people are highly relevant for you, and accountable since real life reputations are on the line. That experience has really resonated with busy young professionals.”
The company has plans to expand to other Canadian cities, but has not made dates public.