Considering its an app people use in order to potentially meet the love of their life, people are very curious about how exactly Tinder works.
The apps user interface is more complicated now than when it was first launched, but the essential principle remains the same: Swipe left on profiles youre not interested in, right on profiles you are and you chat with your matches when both of you indicate interest.
The answer, similar to almost every app out there today, is a proprietary algorithm whose exact details are secret to the general public. However, we do know a few things about how the Tinder algorithm works.
The Old Model
A 2016 article revealed that at the time, Tinder used a ranking algorithm to assign each user a score based on how people swipe on them - the more left swipes you get, the lower your score goes; the more right swipes, the higher your score rises.
However, it wasnt as simple as simply adding or subtracting one point every time someone swipes right or left on you. The algorithm is apparently based on the complex ELO score used to rate chess players, meaning who is swiping is also a factor.
If someone with a high score swiped right on you, youd be likely to jump higher than if someone with a low score swiped right on you. Similarly, a high score swiping left on you would drop you further than a low score swiping left on you.
In this way, people who got a lot of right swipes - the Tinder elite, if you will - had a greater impact on peoples scores than people most people arent crazy about.
The New Model
However, in 2019, Tinder announced that they had moved away from the ranking model in favor of something that tracks your like patterns to get an idea of what type of person each user is interested in.
As well, Tinder keeps track of things like how much time you spend on the app, how often you return to it and what percentage of swipes are right vs. left in order to develop a profile of what type of user you are, which it uses to construct your user experience - who you see, and in what order.
In short, nothing you do when on the app seems to go unnoticed. The app knows that data analytics is key to producing a more streamlined product, and theyre not shy about using it. Next time you see someones profile pop up, know that theyre being put there according to a very complex set of calculations.
Whether those calculations will lead to anything more, though? Thats a whole other layer of complexity that even Tinders data analysts cant accurately predict. The only way to find out is to swipe right and see if you match.
Whats Next for Tinder
Tinders become the go-to online dating platform for American singles for since its introduction back in 2012, but the app isnt interested in sitting on its laurels.
2020 marks a year where Tinder is making serious strides when it comes to an often under-considered aspect of the user experience for dating apps: the users safety once they put their phone down and begin the actual date.
Tinders finally recognizing that it has a role to play in making sure a Tinder date doesnt go south in a horrible way. Partnering with a service called Noonlight, the app is giving its users the opportunity to notify others when theyre going on a date, when and where its going to be and an option to quickly alert authorities if they begin to feel unsafe.