Shelve the roses and chocolate, and bust out your smartphone—if you haven’t already that is. Online dating has been around for several years, but thanks in part to mobile dating apps, it is exploding. One in ten American adults has dabbled in online dating, according to Pew Research Center, and it’s poised to become a $2 billion industry.
Yet women have not been as quick to embrace the dating apps; men are twice as active as women when it comes to online dating, according to 2013 research. And women have been subjected to hostile, lewd and harassing comments on popular dating apps, like Tinder and OkCupid, which have been created by largely male teams. Female entrepreneurs have seen an opening, and several dating apps have been created by women — for women.
Whether they’ll be hugely successful remains to be seen. Coffee Meets Bagel claims 100,000 to 500,000 users and has attracted $2.8 million in funding. Others, like Bumble, which launched late 2014, are newcomers on the market.
And as for whether they’re better routes for finding love and companionship, that is an open question. Given Valentine’s Day is approaching, we’ve identified 6 dating apps created by women, some of which already have attracted criticism.