Tinder has unveiled a promised $499-a-month elite subscription called “Tinder Select” that includes unique benefits such as the ability to be seen by more users, including “most wanted profiles,” the ability to send direct messages to other users even without a match, and other VIP-level features.
The features alone don’t give Tinder Select much of an advantage. Rather, it’s more about exclusivity. Tinder claims that less than 1% of users will have access to this premium product, and members will be able to confirm their status with an exclusive SELECT badge on their profile.
The inspiration for this members-only club was inspired by Tinder’s July 2022 acquisition of Match’s other high-end dating app, The League, which can cost users up to $1,000 per week. During its Q2 2023 earnings report, Tinder CEO Mark Van Rijswijk said that the acquisition of The League indicates that there is a dating market in which users are willing to pay a lot for quality dating and experiences.
However, Tinder Select doesn’t rely on human assistants and doesn’t offer anything really worth paying $500 a month for. Aside from exclusivity, the feature set is pretty sparse. Favorites can send direct messages to other users without matches, but no more than twice a week, and they can’t send “superlikes” at the same time. In addition, some recipients may opt out of receiving such messages, the company’s website notes. In addition, Select members’ profiles will appear in the app’s Like You grid without blurring for seven days, even if they don’t pay for a Tinder Gold or Platinum subscription.
Meanwhile, Select members are promised to be shown the “most in-demand profiles” on Tinder so they can get more quality introductions. The company doesn’t specify how the technology works or how it rates these so-called “exceptional connections,” but it can be assumed that they include other Select members or those most liked by other users.
In addition, Tinder Select users will be able to test out new Tinder features before anyone else, hide ads and see the likes they’ve sent in the last seven days.
The new subscription can be supplemented with a Plus, Gold or Platinum subscription for access to additional features, the company notes.
To apply for the Tinder Select program, a user must have at least four photos, five interests, a bio of at least 15 characters, demonstrate intent to start a relationship, be photo verified and, importantly, have a lot of money to spend on dating apps. If approved, he or she will receive an in-app notification as well as an email with a unique unlock code.
While Tinder Select is expected to attract only a small number of subscribers, the cost of the feature could boost Tinder’s profits at a time when the number of paying users is down 4% from last year, as the company reported in August.
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