Hinge (app)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Original author(s)Justin McLeod
(Founder, CEO)
Developer(s)Match Group
Initial release2012; 12 years ago (2012)
Operating systemiOS, Android
TypeDating app
LicenseProprietary software with Terms of Use

Hinge is an online dating application. Using an algorithm, the app displays potential matches, allowing the user to dismiss or attempt to match by responding to a specific piece of content on their profile. The service emphasizes uploading user-generated content in a variety of formats, such as photos, videos, and "prompts" as a way to express personality and appearance. The app is fully owned by Match Group as of February 2019.


In 2011, founder and CEO Justin McLeod (alongside a team including Frances Haugen) founded a desktop service called Secret Agent Cupid, which allowed users to connect to Facebook and list which of their friends they had crushes on.[1][2][3][4] Throughout 2012, this became a mobile application called Hinge, which launched in February 2013.[5] The application was designed to be less superficial than Tinder, forgoing Tinder-like swiping actions and branding itself as "the relationship app".[6] Before Hinge gained enough users to sustain the business, the company nearly ran out of funding. When making the app, McLeod spent much of the remaining money on a launch party in Washington, D.C., which enabled the company to obtain the next round of funding, saving it from insolvency.[7][8]

Throughout 2017, Hinge received more mentions than any other dating app in the "Weddings" section of The New York Times.[9] Hinge Matchmaker was released in September 2017, claiming to reinvent online dating for "people that missed out on the dating app craze".[10] Match Group made investments in Hinge as early as September 2017.[11] In June 2018, Match Group acquired 51% ownership of Hinge,[12] with the right to acquire all remaining shares within a year,[13] and came to own 100% of Hinge by the first quarter of 2019.[14] Under Match Group's management, Hinge's revenue rose from $8 million in 2018 to $284 million in 2022.[15] The purchase attracted some criticism from antitrust advocates, who see it as indicative of a larger trend toward monopolization in the technology industry.[16][17]

The application's popularity was boosted in 2019 when U.S. presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg revealed that he had met his husband on Hinge.[18] Also in 2019, the company started Hinge Labs to research successful matches and fine-tune the app's compatibility algorithm and other features.[19] Hinge was featured on CNET as one of the best dating sites for 2021.[20] A voice message feature was added to the app in October 2021.[21]

As of 2023, Hinge had 23 million regular users.[22] At the end of 2023's third quarter Hinge had 1.3 million paying users, up 33% from the year-ago quarter.[23] The number of paying users grew to 1.4 million in the first quarter of 2024, a 31% increase over Q1 2023, with $124 million in revenue.[24]


Presented in a vertical timeline, profiles on Hinge are composed of up to six pictures, alongside three self-selected personal prompts which encourage users to focus on personality traits rather than solely appearance. Instead of swiping, users must "like" specific photos or prompts if they wish to reach out to other members, though they are not required to respond to these photos or prompts.[25] Hinge allows users to filter matches based on traits that it believes are important to users, such as religion or height. Other traits that may be important to users, such as body type or whether someone is more introverted or extroverted, are not included.[26]

Users can message other users without first requiring a "match".[19] As a ghosting countermeasure, a "Your Turn" feature reminds a user to continue a conversation.[27] In 2018, in order to find more compatible matches, Hinge launched a "We Met" feature which allows members to privately confirm that they have at least had a first date with a particular match.[28][29]

In July 2018, Hinge rolled out its "most compatible" feature, which uses the Gale–Shapley algorithm to recommend one user per day that Hinge claims is the best pairing, determined by their likes and passes.[30] Hinge formerly used Facebook friend lists to facilitate connections.[6][31] However, in 2018, the app moved away from using friends of friends as a predictor of compatibility and was redesigned to no longer require Facebook.[32][33]


Hinge marketing focuses on its "designed to be deleted" theme; when two Hinge users fall in love, the app's mascot Hingie is shown being destroyed in various ways such as getting roasted in a campfire, encased in ice, run over by a taxi, or flattened by an air conditioning unit.[20][34] In 2020, the app launched Hingie Shop, selling products that can be "destroyed," such as bath bombs and s'mores, in addition to apparel and jewelry.[35][36]

After a video made by Gina DiVittorio titled "The ideal woman according to guys' Hinge profiles" went viral in 2019, the company hired DiVittorio to star in a web series called Cheap Date, which featured her trying and reviewing date ideas that cost less than $20. The series was nominated for a 2020 Webby Award in the "Social Culture & Lifestyle (Video)" category.[37][38][39][40]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Carman, Ashley (9 April 2019). "Hinge's redesign is all about wanting you to eventually delete the dating app". The Verge. Archived from the original on 2020-02-20. Retrieved 2020-02-20.
  2. ^ Murphy, Hannah (October 4, 2021). "Whistleblower accuses Facebook of misleading public and investors". Financial Times. Archived from the original on October 4, 2021. Retrieved October 6, 2021.
  3. ^ Francis, Hannah (2015-03-27). "Tired of Tinder? Hinge dating app founder Justin McLeod thinks he's discovered a new formula". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2021-10-05.
  4. ^ Parker, Garret (2016-12-14). "Justin McLeod: 10 Things You Didn't Know About The Hinge CEO". Money Inc. Retrieved 2021-10-05.
  5. ^ Shontell, Alyson. "A Dying Dating App Blew Its Last $25,000 On A Hail Mary — Now It's On Fire, Giving Tinder A Run For Its Money". Business Insider. Archived from the original on 2020-05-16. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  6. ^ a b Markowitz, Dale (September 29, 2017). "Hinge's CEO says a good dating app relies on vulnerability, not algorithms". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on May 23, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  7. ^ Yakowicz, Will (2014-11-10). "The Hail Mary Pass That Saved Hinge from Failure". Inc.com. Archived from the original on 2019-11-03. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  8. ^ Hyrkas, Erik (2013-02-08). "Hinge launch party debuts DC mobile dating app on 1776 Campus". Tech Void. Archived from the original on 2020-11-12. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  9. ^ Lusinski, Natalia (Dec 12, 2017). "What's The Best Dating App For Marriage? Hinge Had The Most Mentions In The 'Weddings' Section Of The 'New York Times'". Bustle. Archived from the original on March 19, 2020. Retrieved March 19, 2020.
  10. ^ Miller, Theo (September 22, 2017). "Hinge Matchmaker Expands Online Dating Craze". Forbes.com. Archived from the original on April 1, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  11. ^ "Match Group Expands Portfolio With Dating App Hinge". Nasdaq.com. June 20, 2018. Archived from the original on June 24, 2018. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  12. ^ Carman, Ashley (June 20, 2018). "Tinder parent company buys anti-Tinder dating app Hinge". The Verge. Archived from the original on June 22, 2018. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  13. ^ Chang, Lulu (June 22, 2018). "Tinder's parent company Match Group swipes right on Hinge". Digital Trends. Archived from the original on June 24, 2018. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  14. ^ Perez, Sarah (7 February 2019). "Match Group fully acquires relationship-focused app Hinge". TechCrunch. Archived from the original on 2021-07-30. Retrieved 2019-04-15.
  15. ^ Curry, David. "Hinge Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)". Business of Apps. Retrieved 26 October 2023.
  16. ^ Tiffany, Kaitlyn (11 February 2019). "Nearly all of the big dating apps are now owned by the same company". Vox.com. Retrieved 12 February 2022.
  17. ^ Hartmans, Avery; Akhtar, Allana (3 February 2021). "How Tinder and Hinge owner Match Group grew to dominate the country's online dating market — but let Bumble get away". Business Insider. Retrieved 12 February 2022.
  18. ^ Mohamed, Theron (August 8, 2019). "Hinge downloads more than tripled last quarter after Pete Buttigieg revealed he met his husband on the dating app". Markets Insider. Archived from the original on 2020-03-19. Retrieved 2020-03-19.
  19. ^ a b Visram, Talib (2019-10-24). "Hinge's founder gets vulnerable about data, addiction, and 'Modern Love'". Fast Company. Archived from the original on 2020-04-21. Retrieved 2020-03-13.
  20. ^ a b Fleenor, Rebecca. "Best dating sites". CNET.com. Retrieved 2021-10-13.
  21. ^ "Hinge Has Become the Only Audio App We Care About". Jezebel.com. 21 December 2021. Retrieved 2022-01-20.
  22. ^ "Experts Recommend This Dating App If You're Looking For Something Serious". mindbodygreen. 2023-04-18. Retrieved 2023-07-05.
  23. ^ "MatchGroup, Letter to Shareholders, Q3 2023" (PDF). Retrieved 9 November 2023.
  24. ^ Forristal, Lauren (8 May 2024). "Match looks to Hinge as Tinder fails". TechCrunch. Retrieved 9 May 2024.
  25. ^ Matthews, Dylan (2015-03-19). "9 questions about the dating app Hinge you were too embarrassed to ask". Vox. Archived from the original on 2021-05-23. Retrieved 2021-05-23.
  26. ^ Heilweil, Rebecca (2020-02-14). "We answered your dating app questions". Vox. Archived from the original on 2020-02-28. Retrieved 2020-03-13.
  27. ^ Perez, Sarah (December 20, 2017). "Dating app Hinge rolls out a new feature to reduce 'ghosting'". TechCrunch.com. Archived from the original on April 1, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  28. ^ Orenstein, Hannah (2018-10-16). "Hinge's Newest Feature Is Designed To Make Your Next First Date Even Better". Elite Daily. Archived from the original on 2019-09-29. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  29. ^ Andrews, Taylor (2018-11-01). "This New Anti-Ghosting Feature on a Dating App Totally Works". Cosmopolitan. Archived from the original on 2019-05-26. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  30. ^ Wells, Sarah (2018-07-11). "Hinge employs new algorithm to find your 'most compatible' match". TechCrunch. Archived from the original on 2021-07-30. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  31. ^ Beck, Julie (October 25, 2016). "The Rise of Dating-App Fatigue". The Atlantic. Archived from the original on April 1, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  32. ^ Liptak, Andrew (2018-06-02). "Hinge will no longer require you to log in via Facebook". The Verge. Archived from the original on 2020-11-09. Retrieved 2020-03-13.
  33. ^ Perez, Sarah (June 2018). "Dating app Hinge is ditching the Facebook login requirement". TechCrunch. Archived from the original on 2021-07-30. Retrieved 2020-03-13.
  34. ^ "Hinge, the new dating app designed to be deleted | IOL". www.iol.co.za. Archived from the original on 2019-10-08. Retrieved 2019-10-08.
  35. ^ Zelaya, Ian (2020-01-08). "Hinge Launches Online Shop With Stuff Meant to be Destroyed". www.adweek.com. Archived from the original on 2020-04-10. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  36. ^ Watson, Imogen (8 January 2020). "Hinge opens merch store stocked with Hingie garbs and 'delete day' goods". The Drum. Retrieved 13 February 2022.
  37. ^ Jalili, Candice (2 July 2019). "You Need To See This Woman's Hilariously Accurate Video About Dating On Hinge". Elite Daily. Retrieved 2022-07-15.
  38. ^ "Rum: When Molasses Flooded Boston (with Gina DiVittorio)". Here's Where it Went Wrong (Podcast). BlueWire. 13 October 2020. Event occurs at 7:10. Retrieved 15 July 2022.
  39. ^ "Hinge: Best Use of Stories". The Webby Awards. Retrieved 16 July 2022.
  40. ^ Hinge | Webby Awards | Best Use of Stories (YouTube). Hinge. 4 February 2020. Event occurs at 0:44. Retrieved 16 July 2022.

External links[edit]