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The 5 best dating apps: Find your match

What is the best dating app? Hinge is ZDNet's top choice. We compared features, membership diversity, cost, and sign-up process to come up with the best dating apps available to try.
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Written by Lena Borrelli, Contributing Writer on
Reviewed by Elyse Betters Picaro

Finding love in 2022 is not the easiest, nor was it any better in 2011 when I first met my husband. All it took was a bottle of wine, some liquid courage, and a popular dating app, and I was well on my way to a happy marriage. 

Today, however, the Internet can be both a blessing and a curse, with so many spammers and scams running rampant today. That exciting feeling of finding love can all too quickly plummet to crushing disappointment when you realize that the dating site (and your budding love) is not, in fact, legitimate. 

That is where we can help. These are the best dating apps to help you find that perfect match you have been seeking, no matter what you are looking for. 

Hinge app Best dating app

Compatibility: Android, iOS

Hinge boasts some pretty impressive statistics, sharing that its connections lead to a second date three out of four times. It is not only available in the US but also in the UK, Canada, and Australia for greater global power. 

It is a great choice for those who are searching for love quickly and without the drawn-out, complicated processes of other dating apps. You will not be given matches for anyone other than those who are a match based on recorded responses about things like religion, height, and politics. You can start a conversation based on a particular portion of someone's profile, making it super easy to find relatable and interesting things to converse about. 

Hinge does not just match and disappear like a bad date; instead, it sticks around to check in with you every so often to see how you are liking your matches. 

Price: You can choose between a free plan and a paid membership with Hinge.

Plan

Monthly cost

Free

  • $0

Premium

  • Monthly: $29.99
  • 3 months: $19.99
  • 6 months: $14.99

Pros:

  • Simple sign-up
  • Free option
  • Personalized dating advice

Cons:

  • Smaller membership than larger sites
  • Limited free features
  • No background checks for members
Bumbe app Best Dating app
Getty

Compatibility: Android, iOS

Bumble boasts female empowerment by letting the women take the lead. Women have the power to initiate and maintain conversations, while men only have the chance to respond. It helps to rule out the Internet's creepy crawlers that are vastly inappropriate. 

It works, too, with Bumble used by millions of people to find love and even friendship. It works for professional contacts, too, although that is often not what users seek. You will have to pay to access advanced features, but there is a free plan available to get you started. Matches work on a 24-hour cycle, so you have one day to start a chat or respond to a conversation. 

Choose from Date, BFF, or Bizz to get started with unlimited swipes and chats to help you find that perfect match. You can also link your social media and Spotify accounts to help friends you already have or make new ones based on your interests.

Price: Bumble offers five plans, including one free and four paid plans, with a 14-day free trial.

Plan

Cost

Free

  • $0

Bumble Boost

  • Daily: $1.99
  • Weekly: $6.99
  • Monthly: $18.99
  • 3 months: $39.99
  • 6 months: $59.99

Bumble Premium

  • Daily: $3.49
  • Weekly: $13.99
  • Monthly: $29.99
  • 3 months: $59.99
  • 6 months: $99.99
  • Lifetime: $149.99

SuperSwipe

  • 1 coin: $1.99
  • 5 coins: $7.99
  • 10 coins: $14.99
  • 20 coins: $24.99

Spotlight

  • 1x: $4.99
  • 5x: $12.99
  • 15x: $29/99
  • 30x: $49.99

Pros:

  • Proactive approach for women
  • Easy setup
  • Blocking feature for unwanted messages 

Cons:

  • Men cannot initiate conversations
  • 24-hour time limit on matches
  • Limited search features
Eharmony app Best Dating app
eHarmony

Compatibility: Android, iOS

eharmony is one of the mainstays in the dating world, helping over 2 million members find their match on the platform. It helps to take the guesswork out of dating by using a proprietary Compatibility Matching System to pair couples based on unique preferences and characteristics. 

Your responses reveal your own Personality Profile, which includes a complimentary report about your unique character, relationship preferences, and communication styles. Armed with this perspective, it could be much easier for you to find love when you are more acutely aware of what you need. Once you find a match, you can use an Icebreaker test to get the conversation going, or you can simply send a smile. Either way, dating is made secure with the help of secure, in-app Video Dates. 

All in all, this is a dating app that is best for more serious users, people that are actively looking for a serious relationship.

Price: eharmony offers four plans, including one free and three paid plans.

Plan

Monthly cost

Free

$0

Premium Light (6 months) 

$65.90

Premium Plus (12 months)

$45.90

Premium Extra (24 months)

$35.90

Pros:

  • Tons of positive testimonials
  • Deep focus on compatibility
  • Tends to attract more serious singles

Cons:

  • Can get pricey
  • Lengthy sign-up process
  • Must upgrade for best features
Match app Best Dating app
Match

Compatibility: Android, iOS

Match has been around for 25 years, making it one of the longest-running dating apps in the world. I myself am partial to Match, having found my husband on the app. After a decade together, I have to admit that the app is doing something right because I am far from the only successful Match to have found love on the platform. 

Match is a free service that offers daily matches. Once you find someone that sparks your interest, you can jump on a video chat, available in-app, or opt for a milder approach with Match's helpful conversation starters that help arm you with topics should the conversational well run dry during your date. It is your choice of how you want to mingle, whether it is via virtual or in-person events or simply messaging on the platform before an in-person date. If you need help, Match has dating experts available to boost confidence and equip you with all the tools you need to enjoy your next date.

Price: Match offers two paid plans, Standard and Premium, with a three-day free trial. 

Plan

Cost

Standard

  • 3 months: $31.99 
  • 6 months: $22.99
  • 12 months: $18.99

Premium

  • 3 months: $34.99 
  • 6 months: $24.99
  • 12 months: $19.99

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • A mainstay in dating apps
  • Built-in guarantee

Cons:

  • Extremely limited trial
  • Many inactive users 
  • Several customer complaints regarding billing 


Tinder app Best Dating app
Getty

Compatibility: Android, iOS

You may find forever love on the platform, but Tinder is an app best designed for more casual connections. The new Millennial dating app offers casual daters to find like-minded matches, although that does not mean there are no opportunities for serious relationships. As the app says, "You can be here for a long time, and a good time, too." 

There have been 30 billion matches to date worldwide, further attesting to its convenient use and short-term compatibility. Free to use, you can designate your sexual orientation to narrow the dating pool and then wait for viewers, which you can easily track under the Likes You feature. 

Matches are secured by Tinder's Photo Verification, a much-needed additional security measure. Plus, if you are a bit nervous about meeting your match, opt for Noonlight, which allows you to bring someone along with all your dates. Swipe right or left, but either way, Tinder can help you find a whole variety of matches, no matter what type of relationship you may be seeking.

Price: Tinder previously offered age-based pricing with two models for those over 30 and under 30. However, the company is now phasing out this practice and replacing it with a flat-fee model.

Pros:

  • Free version
  • Great for casual encounters
  • No longer age-based pricing

Cons:

  • Very short trial
  • Best for daily use
  • A limited number of swipes

What is the best dating app?

Hinge gets our vote for the best dating app for several reasons:

  1. This dating model is all about keeping things fuss-free and efficient.
  2. A free plan is available.
  3. Ongoing support is included to ensure you find the best match for you.

Hinge is easy to use and even easier to get started, plus it has successfully paired couples three out of four times. It is also affordable for those on a budget, offering several different plans to meet your individual needs. However, there are several other dating apps that may be a better fit for you. It simply depends on what you are looking for in a dating app. 

To help you compare, here is a breakdown of the best dating apps today.

Dating app

Compatibility

Cost

Free Trial

Bumble

Android, iOS

$0 - $149.99

14 days

eharmony

Android, iOS

$0 - $65.90/mo.

-

Hinge

Android, iOS

$0 - $29.99/mo.

-

Match

Android, iOS

$18.99 - $34.99

3 days

Tinder

Android, iOS

TBD

3 days

Which is the right dating app for you?

It can be confusing to sort between all of the different dating apps, so we offer our expert recommendations to help.

Choose this dating app...

When you...

Hinge

Want an affordable app based on efficiency 

Bumble

Are a female ready to make the first move

eharmony

Are looking for that forever love

Match

Want a long-term relationship

Tinder

Are seeking a hookup more than love

How did we choose these dating apps?

We consider a number of factors in our expert studies that can all help you find the best dating app for your needs.

  • Features: Whether it's swipe right or simply a click, it is important to consider what kind of features you need in an app to make you most successful in dating.
  • Membership Diversity: Characteristics like age, gender, and race are all priorities for users. By ensuring the site you choose has the right kind of matches for you, you have a better chance of finding a match that much sooner. 
  • Cost: Price is always important, as many users are on a budget. While most dating apps are free, many also offer the option to upgrade to a paid plan in order to access unlimited or bonus features. 
  • Sign-up process: The sign-up process can vary significantly from app to app. Some may require a simple sign-up that includes basic information, while others, like eharmony, may require a lengthy questionnaire before you can begin exploring matches.

What is a dating app?

A dating app is a mobile service that allows users to find love -- temporary or permanent -- as long as they have an Internet connection. Because it is an app, it is available online or via your mobile device, allowing you to complete set up and find a match that much sooner. 

Do dating apps work?

Your success on a dating app all depends on you, the match you are seeking, and the app you choose. eharmony, a mainstay among the best dating apps, says it has helped match over two million people find love. 

Are there alternative dating apps worth considering?

There is no shortage of dating apps available in 2022. These are some dating apps that cater to tastes based on specific preferences and lifestyles, such as these popular apps.

To help you find love that much sooner, check out our top picks for the best computers and best laptops in 2022!  

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