Encyclopedia of Sexuality and Gender

Living Edition
| Editors: Amy D. Lykins

Dating Apps

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-59531-3_19-1



Dating apps are software applications designed to generate connections between people who are interested in romance, casual sex, or friendship. Downloaded onto mobile phones, they feature algorithms based on factors like age, gender of user and desired partner, and the distance users will travel to meet one another. Many apps also access information from social media platforms like Facebook to create prospective romantic matches. Dating apps run on Wi-Fi or data and use real-time geo-social information to update user profiles, which distinguishes them from more traditional online dating sites that recirculate the original information input into user profiles to generate matches. These applications make dating experience mobile and ever-changing, and over ninety-one million people worldwide are currently using one or more dating apps.


Dating apps emerged in 2003 and...

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Health StudiesUniversity of Western OntarioLondonCanada