Snack, a video-first mobile dating app designed with a younger generation in mind, is opening itself up to gen Z investors. On Monday 10 May, the startup announced the launch of its own gen Z Syndicate on AngelList, which will allow gen Z community members, influencers, creators and others to participate in the company’s upcoming $2 million simple agreement for future equity (SAFE), alongside other funds and angel investors.
In February 2021, the company announced $3.5 million in seed funding for its TikTok-style dating app, where users post videos to a feed that others then like in order to be matched. Snack believes videos allow users to better showcase their interests and lifestyle, as well as show off their personalities in ways static photos simply cannot. When two people like each other’s videos, they’re invited to direct message one another.
Dubbed the ‘Tinder meets TikTok’ dating app by TechCrunch, Snack’s user experience is very much like engaging with a TikTok app that’s solely built for dating. In fact, Snack is one of the first apps that will be adopting TikTok’s new Login software development kit (SDK) for third-party apps, which gives the dating app’s users the ability to reshare their TikTok videos to their dating profiles.
Founded by Kimberly Kaplan, Snack aims to merge the popularity of TikTok’s format with the dating world. Prior to launching her own app, Kaplan worked at the Canadian online dating service Plenty of Fish (PoF), where she was one of the earliest employees. “She led product, marketing and revenue and was on the executive team that eventually sold PoF to Match Group for $575 million in 2015,” writes TechCrunch.
When it comes to gen Z and the way they tend to use popular dating apps such as Bumble or Tinder, Kaplan realised that just after matching with someone, this demographic would move the conversation (and connection) over to apps like Snapchat and Instagram almost every time. On social media platforms, they would then watch each others’ Stories and flirt more casually, rather than carrying on a ‘high-pressure’ DM conversation on the dating apps.
Just as Snack’s now-founder realised the behaviour of this specific demographic, TikTok surged in popularity, showing a shift in the average consumer’s attitude towards creating short-form videos online. And Kaplan jumped at the opportunity.
Just like on TikTok, the dating app is currently working on some additional video editing features to let users get as creative as they wish with their content. Toward the end of February 2021, Snack’s team consisted of 10 people, and Kaplan told TechCrunch that the team is 60 per cent diverse with 40 per cent of employees being visible minorities.
After testing a beta version in February on a few lucky ones, Snack became available in February 2021. Furthermore, the app has also created a Snack Discord community where members can discuss all things about the online dating app. “Join our server to stay updated about changes to Snack, report bugs, seek customer support directly from the Snack team, offer your feedback and ideas, meet new friends, seek dating advice, and more,” reads the company’s website.
So, whether you’re more interested in Charli D’Amelio and Bella Poarch or Paul Black and Lucas Ansel, start working on your video editing skills now in order to bring on your best flirting game on Snack. See you on the flip side, bestie.
Remember that text from your latest Tinder match you ‘accidentally’ swiped away from your notification bar this morning? When were you planning on replying to that? Has spontaneity truly become a thing of the past? Maybe the 24/7 accessibility of dating apps is to blame—but imagine having a dedicated day of the week where all of the users you match with on a dating app are available to date. A day filled with adrenaline rushes in sharp contrast to the countless evenings you’ve spent on your couch swiping and scrolling for the sake of it. Meet Thursday, the dating app that comes to life only one day of the week, and like its name suggests, that day is Thursday.
Thursday is a London-based dating app co-founded by George Rawlings and Matthew McNeill Love with the purpose of nullifying ‘dating app fatigue’. “Getting a match isn’t exciting anymore,” the duo told The Daily Mail. “This is because of the time and effort involved in sparking a decent conversation which actually results in a date.” Outlining how “people are often on different agendas and things fizzle out quickly,” Rawlings and McNeill set out in a bid to change the mindset and motivations backing users in the dating app industry altogether.
“We built an app where everything you want from online dating happens in one day, making Thursday the one day of the week when singles can match, chat and meet.” Why, you ask? Because there’s more to life than dating apps! “By limiting the time the app is on, there will be an atmosphere of proactive dating and an appetite for conversation and dates,” the duo added.
Set to launch in London and New York on 13 May 2021—with subsequent rollouts in Dublin, Cardiff and Glasgow—the app has amassed more than 100,000 sign-ups already. So, if you want to literally turn into a ‘Tinderella’ on Thursdays, here’s how the app is set to work.
After downloading Thursday, users can build their profile by uploading five photos of themselves and sharing their interests and hobbies for others to view and vibe with. They can then send a ‘like’ to someone they fancy. If the like is accepted by the potential match, they can begin chatting. Although potential matches are based on a user’s location, they also have the choice to work out a convenient place to meet up later on the day.
With the potential of matching up to 10 people per day, the app also offers the ‘story’ feature similar to Snapchat. This allows users to share short video clips with their matches. The challenge here, however, is that all of the stories, chats, and matches disappear at midnight every Thursday—so you would have to make the most out of your matches and leave a solid glass slipper in their minds before time runs out.
The app also has a limited number of VIP memberships available for a monthly fee. The profile of these members would be boosted all day and users would be able to send unlimited likes with the potential of unlocking Saturday as a second day they can use the app.
Now, you must be wondering how a dating app can restrict users on specific days. In terms of Thursday’s interface (let’s say if you open up the app on a Monday morning), you would be greeted with a timer counting down the number of days you have to wait until the portal opens up. “It’s Monday, sorry but the app is turned off today” would alternatively be displayed on the top of the screen.
The platform also has a policy against hate speech, including racism, body shaming or misogynistic commentary. Thursday further vows to provide a safe space for women who have lost their confidence among an endless stream of profiles and matches. “We hope women will take comfort in our verification requirement,” the duo told Bustle. “Everyone who uses the app must verify their identity using a government-issued driving license or passport. This means we will know exactly who is using the app at all times.”
Dating app fatigue may sound like a made-up term, but it actually exists along with a list of symptoms to back it up. Also known as ‘swiper’s fatigue’, symptoms of the ‘state of mind’ include a user constantly deleting and reinstalling dating apps on their phones. While deleting the app, users would typically be thinking along the lines of ‘I can find a partner in real life’ whereas, within the next two days, they are seen crawling back into the App Store and reactivating their profile.
There also comes a point where constant swiping on dating apps begins to feel like a chore that they have to do rather than something they want to. Users at this point will constantly open the app without any purpose and swipe right on people they know they’re not interested in—usually with the justification of ‘I need to stop being so picky’. Don’t even get me started on all of the ghosting they would receive. Ghosting is considered equivalent to hitting rock-bottom with dating fatigue.
If that was stressful enough to read, imagine experiencing it in real life. It could actually take a toll on your mental health. A survey conducted on 1,000 dating app users from the UK, commissioned by JigTalk, found that almost 30 per cent of users spend seven hours per week swiping and scrolling to find a match. More worryingly, 14 per cent of those surveyed clocked in a whopping 14 hours. The fatigue is thereby speculated to kill a user’s chance at finding love altogether.
In the case of Thursday, establishing a dedicated day per week would essentially boost the rate at which matches are made, conversations are had and dates are actually organised. “Sure, going on a date that day takes confidence, but the adrenaline and anticipation associated with making Thursdays your day to date—knowing thousands of other people are thinking the same thing—makes this irresistible,” the creators of the app said speaking with Bustle. “It’s all about the fear of missing out and spontaneous dating during our busy lives and it’s bloody refreshing!”
So, if you want to spice up your love life with elements of spontaneity in a digitally-dependant era or feel like pulling through dating app fatigue yourself, it’s not too late to sign up for Thursday before its official launch. All you have to do is head over to the app’s website and register with your email address. You will then be redirected to the app’s private Instagram account where you can request and be notified when the app launches and is ready to be downloaded. Ripping off fairy godmother’s lines from Cinderella, here I am telling you, “Hurry before the clock strikes 12! Because even miracles take a little bit of time.”