Tinder has amassed a huge user base by focusing exclusively on one-on-one connections — but there are only so many tech-savvy singles in the world. To broaden its reach, the company is launching Tinder Social, a new tool that allows friends to plan group activities and meet new people.
Users can create a group by selecting one to three friends who also have Tinder Social enabled. Group members can choose a suggested activity, like “Happy hour, anyone?” or “Movie night?” When a user opts-in to two groups, they merge. Group members enter a group chat to make plans for the evening.
Like the app’s original features, Tinder Social focuses on immediacy. Group chats expire at noon the day after they are created.
“It’s not group dating,” Tinder said in an April blog post announcing an early test of the service. “It’s a fun new way to meet new people out with your friends.”
The group feature is Tinder’s latest attempt to break from its reputation as “the hookup app.” The company continues to stress that the app is a tool for making all kinds of connections — not just finding a date.
Tinder Social launches today in the U.S., UK, Canada, Australia, and India. Tinder began testing Tinder Social in Australia this spring and “found that users were looking for the same thing: A feature to help plan their night, get a crowd together, check out new places, try new things, hang with friends and make new connections.”
The test-launch made headlines when users in Australia realized that Tinder Social displayed their profiles to their Facebook friends — information that some would prefer to keep private. During the test, users were opted into the feature by default. It seems Tinder learned from that experience. In the version of Tinder Social launching today, users have to opt-in.