Swiping Shallow: Bumble


Welcome back to another thirsty adventure in dating. This week I delved into an app independent of the Match group, Bumble. Started by Tinder co-founder Whitney Wolfe Herd, Bumble has all the strong features of a dating app and a few extras which really set it apart.

Like Tinder and POF, Bumble also uses a swipe-based storefront approach to match users. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that you already figured that was coming. It is an industry standard but one that Bumble pulls off well.

Unlike Tinder, Bumble encourages users to answer some pretty basic questions to improve their profiles. These questions range from your opinions on smoking to how many pets you have, and they manage to get across most of the boring pieces of a bio straight away. Beyond the basic questions, Bumble also has an option for users to answer some more interesting icebreaker questions. Some are pretty simple (what is your go-to song?) but others require users to put in a bit more effort. Questions like “Who is your ideal dinner guest?” can give users a chance to put together a far more interesting bio. Some questions do come out of left field. Do my matches care who holds me most accountable for myself? (Hint hint… it’s my boss.)

Now you just pray that someone will look at it.

Thankfully, Bumble’s user interface runs cleanly and has no out-of-the-blue features for newcomers to figure out. Tapping a user’s profile will give you their main photo and bio first, followed by extra photos and questions, all in a neat stream of content. It is the most fluid and direct profile system I have seen in a dating app.

The most striking features Bumble brings to the table are found in its messaging. The app requires that women make the first move (only heterosexual pairs have this feature) and that they message within 24 hours. It is an interesting flip of the script that feels fresh and encourages users to make an effort to sustain interactions. But remember, guys – not having to make the first move does not mean that you can coast by on boring conversation.