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Tinder may soon look more like Snapchat.
The dating app — that definitely prefers not to be called a hookup app and actually has transformed into more of a social app (with features like Tinder Social) — bought the video app startup Wheel.
Wheel’s signature product is an app that allows users to create video-based "stories," not unlike what you see on Snapchat, Instagram and now even Facebook.
Tinder is planning to integrate those video features into its own app, according to Variety. It’s another way to make Tinder take up more of your time, as users’ attention continues to be divided on the smartphone.
The addition is also another way to make sure Tinder stays up to par with others in the dating app industry. Bumble, founded by former Tinder executive Whitney Wolfe, added a Snapchat-like feature last month. Match also is interested in introducing a video feature, Mashable has learned.
"Video is going to happen. We know it’s going to happen. It happening. What happens is this crazy process where people will look at a profile, and then click, and go find someone’s video on other social media to get a little more sense of who they are," Mandy Ginsberg, CEO of Match North America, said in an interview last month.
Strangely, Tinder used to have a story-like feature called Moments, where users could share photos that expired in 24 hours to all their matches. Quite like Snapchat, users could layer filters, doodle and add text over the images. That feature was eliminated in November 2015.
Now something ephemeral and storytelling-like may be coming back to Tinder.
“We are always exploring new ways to innovate while helping our users make connections on Tinder,” Brian Norgard, Tinder’s head of product and revenue, said in a statement.
As part of the deal, Wheel’s team will be joining Tinder. Wheel CEO Paul Boukadakis will be Tinder’s VP of special initiatives and Wheel CTO Chris Shaheen will have a senior role on Tinder’s engineering team, according to Variety. Tinder currently has 200 employees.
Tinder, Wheel and Snapchat are all based in Los Angeles.
Tinder, while competing with services like Match.com, is under the same parent company Match Group. Tinder brings a mobile-focus and younger user base to the service, and also a decent chunk of change.
Tinder has 1.7 million paying users. The app makes 26 million matches daily and has made more than 20 billion matches to date.
Cassie Murdoch contributed reporting.