Try To Get a Date Wherever the Inspiration Strikes YouMashable Jun 02, 2011 Back to press
Idea-driven dating site HowAboutWe has launched a location-based dating app that's more about planning than hooking up.
When we hear “location-based dating app,” we think of services like Grindr and MeetMoi that allow like-minded folks to meet up on the fly.HowAboutWe’s app [iTunes link] is a bit different. Available Thursday for iOS devices, this new mobile dating app is all about finding and planning dates based on location.
For those who have not heard of HowAboutWe, it’s an online dating site — once New York-only, now national — that lets users propose unique date activities, making the experience more about meeting up and doing cool things than scrolling through pics and profiles.
The app taps into location to make that process even simpler. “The best date ideas come to you when you’re out and about, and we wanted to give people a chance to post and respond to dates from the real world, where they are,” says co-founder Brian Schechter. “Parks, cafes, museums, bars — the city is full of date spots and with the app you can find great dates and ask people out based on where you are.”
So here’s how it works: Say you’re at an awesome restaurant with a friend, but you’d rather be there with some handsome dude in the near future. Log into the app, click “Post” and describe the date you’re yearning for (“Dinner accompanied by an intense discussion of Naked Lunch). Click “Suggest a Nearby Spot” and the app taps into Foursquare’s API to provide you with a list of nearby locations.
You can also toggle over to “Dates” to check out “Nearby Dates” proposed by other people, thereby connecting with folks who dig the same locales as you. And, of course, you can also scroll through profiles, filtering potential suitors by age, education, etc., as well as update your own profile in-app. Naturally, you can message other users in-app as well. (Oddly, members have to pay to message other members on the website, but they will be able to message for free in-app.)
All in all, the app is a pretty slick experience, actually a bit preferable to the web version. The ease of planning a date — with accurate location and information — is really the kicker here (fewer chances of misspellings and instances of “Oh, I meant the OTHER laundromat/coffee shop). Also, it’s much easier (and more fun) to flick through profiles on your mobile device than it is on your laptop — score, something else to do in the elevator, aside from checking Twitter for @replies again.
Other dating sites, such as OKCupid, have well-built mobile apps, but they lack the location aspect, and those that do feature that technology are often — let’s face it — a little more focused on the hookup.
What do you think of this mobile dating app? Would you give it a go?