In spite of movies trying to sell us the idea of meeting ‘The One’ in a quaint cafe, the reality is that there is a significantly growing number of individuals who are quite reliant on dating apps to find a partner.
Just look at Tinder. In just over three years since its release, it has become a worldwide phenomenon with its ‘swipe left, swipe right’ gesture instantaneously becoming a pop culture reference.
Closer to home, while Tinder definitely has a presence here, we have Paktor, which basically a localised version of Tinder. That’s not to say that it’s the only dating app in town. Other dating apps take a more specialised approach, like Ivory, which is a dating app targeting high net-worth individuals, while Mat&Minah is an app targeting the Malay/Muslim community.
Just recently, another dating app has made its way to our shores and promises to bring something fresh to the table – or so it seems.
DateTix landed in Singapore earlier this month, backed with some impressive statistics from its soft launch two weeks preceding its official unveiling. Here are the stats: 30,000 downloads during its soft-launch phase, and 4,000 registered users in Singapore within just two weeks.
Following past success in its home country, Hong Kong, as well as in markets such as China and Australia, DateTix felt that the time was right to enter the fray of dating apps in Singapore.
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Nowadays dating seems to be more about swiping and getting matches than actually meeting someone for a good old date face-to-face over lunch or dinner. I definitely prefer dinner dates over virtual ones! Well guess what? @DateTixSG is giving 10 Singaporeans a chance to win $100 vouchers each, just so you can stop swiping and start meeting your matches for face-to-face dates! All you need to do is:  Follow them at @DateTixSG and download the DateTix app (link in their bio)  Pick a local restaurant from the list in their app which you think is perfect for a first date under $50  Post a creative photo telling them your choice and why (your photo can be a selfie, a foodgram, anything!)  Tag them @DateTixSG in your photo and hashtag #10firstDateTix Contest ends on 10 June 2016 at 5pm, so stop swiping and start posting!
The app’s goal is as simple as it is unique – helping singles connect with each other beyond initial contact within the app, focusing on face-to-face interactions over dates at a pre-determined venue.
“I believe there is no replacement for meeting in person, especially when it comes to dating. Online dating should complement traditional forms of dating, instead of replacing them. Hence, we wanted to design an app that encourages Singaporean singles to take the chance to date and get to know each other face-to-face, rather than to just stay connected online,” Michael Ye, CEO of DateTix.
Users can host a date by selecting a venue or simply apply for a date hosted by other singles.
The app will regularly introduce users to other singles who match their profile based on multiple dimensions of compatibility. Finally, users can chat with their matches and decide on a date together within a limited time period.
I Tried The App
The setup process is definitely simple.
After installing the app, open it and you will come to this screen.
The first of a two-part authentication process, you will first need to log in with your Facebook account.
Part two of the verification process involves your phone number.
Enter it in the space provided, press ‘request code’, and wait for an SMS to come in with a number. Enter that number into the next page and you’re good to go.
From here on out, you will be greeted with an all too familiar home screen. The immediate difference comes in the form of a scheduled date below the profile photos of your potential matches.
You may see a variation of meet-ups with any of these self-explanatory tags – Friends, Serious Dating, Casual Dating, Activity Partners, or, for the indecisive, Anything.
Like what you see? Swipe right to accept the date, and wait for that person reply back if he/she is interested.
Not to your fancy? Swipe left, and move on to the next person.
DateTix says that once two users have been matched for a date at a specific time and venue, they will have until the time of the date to chat with each other online before exchanging phone numbers and proceeding with meeting face-to-face.
The time limit is modelled around the idea of scarcity, which motivates people to efficiently use of their time to make worthy and important decisions.
Too bad for me, in the short period of time using the app, I didn’t get any matches, so I’m sorry to say that I won’t be sharing any First Date(Tix) experiences here.
Want To Create A Date? Pay Up
So far so good right?
Unfortunately, I have to report that the free version of the app feels rather handicapped, because the main point of the app is locked under a paid account.
The feature I am referring to is creating the dates yourself and then waiting for the replies to reel in. Thus, some official images would have to suffice in the mean time.
When creating a date, simply, pick a time and venue and the type of people you want to meet, and proceed to post it up.
The good thing about DateTix is that only people who have matched and qualified for your date criteria (which you will set early on) is able to see and apply for your date.
Chat up with all your potential suitors to find out who tickles your fancy. Decide on someone, and off to your date you go.
No Dating App Is Truly Free
This app model not the first, and definitely not the last. Tinder has Tinder Plus, Paktor will require you to sign up for a monthly subscription if you’d like to access additional features; and people are more than willing to pay for it. Such is the state of the social media generation.
Personally, I don’t know if I will ever spend that amount of money on a dating app; I’d rather take my chances striking up a conversation with that lovely lady by the bar.