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By May 2013, Tinder was one of the top 25 social networking apps available on the web based on frequency of use and number of users.

Rad has stated that the impetus for the app was his observation that "no matter who you are, you feel more comfortable approaching somebody if you know they want you to approach them." He believed that a "double opt-in" system could be created to potentially alleviate that stress.Rad has also stated that Tinder filled a gap for social sites for meeting strangers, rather than connecting with people a user already knows.In November 2016, Tinder introduced more options for users to select their gender.In the app's settings, users have the option to type a word that suits their gender identity.Using Facebook, Tinder is able to build a user profile with photos that have already been uploaded.

Basic information is gathered and the users' social graph is analyzed.After transitioning from the clicking function Tinder initially used, Tinder became the first "swipe app", now a term to describe various apps that use swiping left or right to control what content the user sees in a browsing fashion.Companion apps were being developed by different companies allowing users to, for example, use the user's heart rate to determine which direction to swipe instead of the user swiping with their hands.The Boost feature lets the user have the top profile in the area for thirty minutes.Users receive up to ten times the amount of profile views while boosting. If users do not have Tinder Plus or want more Boosts, they can be purchased in the app.As of October 2014, the app was processing over one billion swipes per day, producing about twelve million matches per day.