I’ve been playing with a variety of “local meetup” / “flirt locally” apps — the type that let you post a pic and chat with people near your GPS location on your smartphone. There’s some pretty consistent features between the different apps: You get a profile pic, you get a profile. It shows you people near you. That seems to be where the similarities end, though, since they’re all positioned a bit differently. Read on for my reviews of the most popular apps.
Badoo App Review
Thanks to an advertising campaign in New York (and likely other cities too) Badoo has definitely got the mind-share when it comes to GPS dating apps. Because of this there are a LOT of users on the site, which is certainly a good thing! Overall, it’s definitely worth a try. Everyone on Badoo seems a little bit tentative, but that’s not too much different from the other apps here…
Like: plenty of users. slick interface.
Dislike: no pic messaging. mediocre filtering options.
Skout App Review /
Flurv App Review
As far as I can tell, Skout and Flurv are the exact same app. I’m not sure how that’s allowed by Apple’s App Store, but apparently it is.
I found out about Skout from an article saying several sexual assaults had been linked to the app, so I downloaded it. Yeah, I’m creepy like that. Unsurprisingly enough, Skout/Flurv have shut down their “teen community” as of the time of this writing. Attempting to keep a teen community clean and safe is a tall order indeed — I’m not surprised they shut it down.
Like: A lot of users on the service. Better filtering options than Blendr. Best photo-sharing options of the bunch. Multiple pictures per profile.
Dislike: somewhat confusing app — too many features. App wants in-app purchases to buy points to unlock stuff like “see who checked you out”. Lots of users speaking gHeTtOsTyLeeeee~~~ and other forms of poor English.
Blendr App Review
Blendr is like a Grindr for straight people… almost. The main difference is that everyone knows Grindr is for … well … grinding. Blendr users are a bit more tentative, and that seems to confuse the purpose of the app.
My friend Rick Tastic made an observation about the different types of girls on this app:
Although each girl on Blendr is obviously different, for the most part each falls under one of 3 basic categories:
1) Pics – These girls literally just want to get off via exchanging erotic pictures… my dick is all over that app at this point as a result of not initially realizing this, but don’t take that to mean I actually give a shit because my dick is awesome.
2) Hook Ups – These girls are genuinely interested in meeting/fucking in real life, it just takes a while to warm them up before they’ll be willing to give out their number. They’re still willing to exchange sexy pics though.
3) Connections – These girls are looking for something a little deeper than just a hook up, whether it’s a FWB situation, dating, or just friends. They’re down to meet up, but respond best to being treated like actual human beings as opposed to “I wanna put my dick in your mouth” which would work well for me with Pics girls and ok with Hook Ups girls.
Like: girls that wanted to be on Grindr, but couldn’t, are on Blendr. Easy to share photos or locations. Girls fairly receptive to messaging.
Dislike: only one picture per profile. Not enough users on the service (it’s still pretty new). Advertised as “a new way to meet new people” — not for hooking up. Therefore, most users aren’t necessarily looking to hook up, although some definitely are.
OkCupid Locals App Review
The first app to add “locals” to a (straight) dating/meetup/hookup app (see my original post on OkCupid Locals) With OKC and POF we’re getting away a bit from the ‘local hookup’ type of apps since there are full profiles and ‘compatibility scores’ and whatnot.
Like: many cute girls on the service, detailed profiles, multiple pictures
Dislike: I don’t like that it comes with the assumption that it’s for “dating” and not “hooking up”. (I’ll try to use less “air quotes” as we go along here…) I also don’t like that I can’t send a picture from my camera roll — only take a new one. It’s slower than other apps to message multiple girls — too many different screens to go through. Finally, you can’t send a message to start chat from the “locals” feature — only click “let’s meet” and if she’s interested she can message back. Mobile messaging has issues — if you leave the message screen it deletes your message (so you can’t reference her profile or previous messages)
POF iPhone App Review
Plenty of Fish is apparently a bigger site than OkCupid, although both are free–this has advantages and disadvantages. There are plenty of users, but you’ll have to sort through more users to find the worthwhile ones.
Like: Again, LOTS of chicks to choose from, nice features like who viewed you, matches, “want to meet me?” and a favorites section. Profiles with multiple pictures.
Dislik: Creating an account is pretty painful — two full screens of info before the pic upload and then a survey after! The mobile messaging has issues. For example, you’re in the middle of a message, and you want to reference something on her profile, leaving the message screen deletes the message entirely (on Android). Balls.
My favorite apps so far are Skout and Blendr, in that order. I don’t have a lot of experience with Badoo yet, so it’s possible I might change my mind about it and add it to this top tier. However, picture messaging is really fun and that’s a big lack IMO for Badoo.