Though online communication has made it technically easier than ever to date, it can still be a challenge to sift through all those profiles to find a good match. Luckily the technology exists to help align couples in advance – weeding out unlikely candidates on your behalf. If you download the right apps, you can create your own custom matchmaking toolkit right at the tip of your fingers and take a lot of guesswork out of online dating.
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To get the year off to the right relationship-seeking start, start by downloading these trending dating apps for 2014:
PlentyOfFish: If you have been frustrated in the past with dating sites and apps that seem to match you up with people only looking for flings or immediate hook-ups, PlentyOfFish may be the answer to your dating app angst. If you list on your profile that you are searching for a long-term relationship, people who are searching for casual or short-term interactions are blocked from contacting you. You can also single out specific people that you do not want to contact you, which provides a buffer against unwanted advances. The app is also hyper-localized and will even suggest neutral meeting spots based on your location.
OkCupid: With user-friendly navigation, this free dating app is known for being a spot for singles who are interested in finding a meaningful relationship. The Boston Globe has hailed it as the “Google of online dating” based on its math-based matching algorithm. This site is not as invasive as others when it comes to profile questions – which is good if you are interested in meeting a variety of people and not being stuck with matches of a particular “type.”
Dating DNA: This app is more in-depth when it comes to the screening and personality matching process, and also has full visibility of user profiles so you can see upfront if anyone has wrongly slipped through the cracks. If you’ve ever dealt with the frustration of fake dating profiles, this app is a good fit because it uses location services and other vetting tools to ensure that people are who and what they seem.
HowAboutWe: If you are looking for brevity when it comes to what potential dates have to say about themselves, this is the perfect dating app. People fill in the second part of the question of the app name with examples of their ideal first dates. From there, others can “ask out” the person behind the date idea that caught their attention.
Words with Friends: Okay, so this is not actually a dating app but it has actually matched up some singles, including at least one couple that got married. And what could be better than finding the right person based on a battle of wits, as opposed to a first impression based on a smartphone selfie? If word puzzles aren’t your thing try QuizUp, a new app that lets you challenge strangers to trivia questions.
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Of course, meeting someone in cyberspace is just the first step. These apps can only take you so far in developing a lasting relationship. After you’ve narrowed down some potential relationships, run an online dating check from a reputable company and start slowly, not divulging too much personal information until you’ve established trust. Taking the guesswork out of the when and where of meeting someone will save you a lot of time and heartache, so take advantage of these apps for the best shot at a meaningful relationship in 2014 and beyond.
Thanks, albumen, for the image!
Katie Parsons is a journalist and editor who lives on the East Coast of Florida. She has written for Florida Today, the Orlando Sentinel, ChamberofCommerce.com and the Tribune Media blog Moms at Work. She is writing a memoir about the time when she was single and pregnant and she hosts a blog for parents where she chronicles her own journeys in a combined family.
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