Online Dating

Bumble Dating App Review

Things change when women are in control,” Bumble boldly boasts. The brainchild of Tinder co-founder Whitney Wolfe, Bumble was born out of a desire to reinvent the antiquated rules of dating and empower women to control the conversation in both their personal and professional lives.

Wolfe’s mission was to create an app grounded in positivity and encouragement, where aggression and bullying have no place, and actions are guided by kindness. Her first move was to shake up traditional dating norms by requiring female Bumble users to make the first move. As a result, Bumble has unusually low reports of harassment and abuse, as well as the highest post-match chat rate in the industry.

Incredible Safety Standards for Online Dating on Bumble

Bumble has set unprecedented standards for respectful behavior to ensure all users feel safe, including banning shirtless bathroom mirror selfies (seemingly a staple of all dating apps) and implementing photo verification to ensure users are who they claim to be. Bumble also attacked the problem of ghosting head-on by implementing time limits on communication.

In heterosexual matches, the woman has 24 hours to make the first move and the man has 24 hours to respond or the connection disappears forever. In same sex matches, either person has 24 hours to make the first move and 24 hours to respond before the connection expires. Once a message has been sent or a call made (voice or video), there is no expiration date for a conversation. These time restrictions encourage users to take action and take their connections to the next level, solving the online dating problem of matches that go nowhere.

Most of Bumble’s functionality is free to use. To get started visit their website or install their app. You can then sign up with your phone number or Facebook account, upload additional photos, edit your profile, and set your search filter parameters. Then, it is onto matching. Swipe up and down to see more photos, and left or right to say yes or no. If a mutual match is made, a conversation may be initiated. Tap the chat box icon to view your match queue and current conversations. If you see someone who would be perfect for a friend, long press their photo or open up their profile and tap “Send to a Friend” to play matchmaker.

Bumble’s Unique Online Dating Features

In August 2016, Bumble announced the launch of its paid service, Bumble Boost, which includes three premium features. The Beeline allows a user to see who has already liked them. Rematch offers a second shot with expired matches. Busy Bee add an extension of 24 additional hours to a match.

Though Bumble began as a dating app in 2014, it has evolved to encompass relationships of all kinds. The company is a destination where singles meet their significant others – as well as their best friends and their most important business partners. Bumble launched Bumble BFF in 2016 to connect people with new friends around their city, and soon followed with the launch of Bumble Bizz for business networking. Within the one app you can switch between the 3 modes and any mode can be disabled if you do not want to use it. For the purpose of this review we will just be looking at Bumbles first focus, Dating.

In their own words:

We’re about creating an empowering, safe place for modern society to meet the important people in their lives. We’re making digital relationships personal again. We see Bumble as a movement, bringing kindness and respect back into introductions and promoting equality in traditionally male-dominated relationships. We expect our team and our partners to epitomize our core values, and we’re dedicated to building a worldwide community on this foundation.

But don’t just take their word for it. The company has the stats to back up its big claims.

Bumble has amassed over 46 million registered users. Over 1.9 billion messages have been sent and more than 950 million matches have been made. Women make the first move one million times each day. To date, more than 5,000 engagements and weddings have started on Bumble.

Not bad for just 5 years in business. We expect more big things to come from Bumble in the future.

Bumble Profiles and Sign Up Process

Bumble can be accessed from their website and can be found on Google Play for Android and the Apple App store for iOS. You have the option to create a Bumble account with your phone number or by connecting your Facebook account. If you use a phone number you will be required to verify it by inputting a code that will be sent to you via text. The benefit of using Facebook is that some information will be pulled and used in your Bumble account. You can control what information is used and Bumble says they will never post to your Facebook profile. Also remember when you sign up for Bumble, you will be getting account not only on Bumble Date, but Biz and BFF as well. As mentioned above, for this review we will mainly be concentrating on the dating aspect of Bumble.

When you first signup you need to go through a 4 step process to create your account. Bumble will first ask you for a photo. If you are using a laptop or desktop to access Bubble that doesn’t have a webcam you will not be able to continue using that device (as a webcam is required). After uploading 1 or more photos you will be asked to enter the following information:

  • Sign-up
    • Introduce Yourself – Fill in your first name and birthday along with what gender you identify as
    • Email Address – Used to recover your account if you get locked out by accident
    • Protect your account further by adding a password

After you have signed up and created your account you can then choose what you want to do first. Your choices are: Find dates, new friends or networking. For this review we picked “Find Dates”. You are then asked who you are interested in and are given 3 opt

ions, Men, Women, or Everyone. From here you must give permission to Bumble for your location. On the phone apps the GPS is used and on the web your IP is used to determine your location. If you don’t give permission you will not be able to continue to use the dating app as manually entering your location is not allowed. After that you are presented with some slides which Bumble explains the basics on how the service works and that all members are required to “Bee kind, confident and respectful”. Now your initial dating profile is done and you are taken to the Discovery section where you will be present with matches that you can review and swipe right or left on.

Bumble Costs

Bumble offers a free membership and a paid membership subscription (called Bumble Boost). Coins can also be purchased which can be used on enhanced features found in the dating app.

Prices last confirmed June 03, 2020. Please check Bumble for most recent pricing. All prices in USD unless specified otherwise. Prices may differ based on location, time of purchase, or access point (this can include device used and/or if accessed from a website or app)

Access to all of Bumble’s primary functionality is free, however, some additional “boost features” require a paid subscription

At the moment purchases cannot be handled by Bumble Web. All purchases must happen on the Bumble app

  • Bumble Boost Subscription
  • Extra Features Included
  • The Beeline Match Queue (see who’s already liked you right away)
  • Rematch (rematch with expired matches)
  • Busy Bee (add 24 hours to a match)
  • Advanced Filters (additional filters you can apply to your matches)

Includes: Drinking, Education, Exercise, Family Plans, Height, Pets, Political Leaning, Relationship Type, Religion, Smoking, and Star Sign.

Bumble Viewing and Communication Features

Bumble is very easy to navigate. In the app at the top of the screen you have 3 menu options. On the left is an icon to access your profile (to view or edit). In the middle lists what Bumble service you are using (Date, BFF, or Bizz), and on the right is the Messaging icon. If you are not viewing your profile or not in the Message center, then by default you are in the Discovery/Connection section viewing your potential matches.

Bumble Messaging

With Bumble a match is required before you can communicate with a member. A match happens after two users have mutually right-swiped one another. When a match does happen both members will receive a push notification on their phones (or an email if you use the website). At that point what follows depends on the user’s gender.

Messaging Rules

A conversation can only begin if users mutually swipe right on each other

Female users must initiate conversations with male users – if they don’t start chatting within 24 hours, the match expires and disappears

Male users cannot initiate conversations with female users – they may show interest by extending one match per day to remain in queue for an additional 24 hours

In same-sex or friend connections (from Bumble BFF), either person has to make a move within 24 hours before that connection disappears

As mentioned above users can use the “Daily Extend” feature to keep a match active an extra 24 hours if no communication happened within the first 24 hours from someone they really liked. Once a match expires, the profile goes back into the queue where you may have a chance to match with them again. If you really like a match and it has expired, another option is to subscribe to Bumble Boost where you can initiate a rematch with old expired matches.

In the Messaging section you will be shown your Match Queue, Matches, and Conversations.

Bumble Match Queue and Conversations List

Match Queue

  • Shows a list of mutual matches. These matches have a colored circular border which indicates how much of the 24 hours you have left for a conversation to get started. Women can initiate a conversation for these type of matches
  • Shows Bumble members who have liked and showed interest in you (but you have not seen their profile yet). These are only available to Bumble Boost subscribers

Conversations

  • Shows a list of members who have sent you a message. Clicking or tapping on their photo brings up their profile. Clicking on the text brings up the full conversation
  • You can send written messages, voice only messages, and video messages
  • You can search your messages for a certain conversation by tapping the search icon
  • The AI feature called Private Detector will automatically blur explicit photos shared within a chat and warn the user that they’ve received an obscene image (see story)

Convo Starters

  • For those From the match screen, tap the blue icon to reveal 20 ice breakers Bumble calls its “foolproof first moves.”
  • Choose one that speaks to you and use it as-is or edit it to make it more personal before hitting send
  • If none of the options tickle your fancy, you can minimize the screen and click again to generate 20 new Convo Starters

Bumble Virtual Date

In 2019 Bumble launched video and voice calls. A call must be initiated by the women first and only after a mutual match happens. If the other member is online just tap the camera icon found in the top right of the app on the conversation page you share with the member (for more details see story).

Bumble continues to refine their video chat and add new features. One of them is the “Virtual Dating Badge”. It is an option that users can add to their profiles to let matches know they are willing to go on video chat dates.

Verdict

Bumble is female friendly without throwing the guys on the sidelines, and its user-friendly properties make it easy to use. There are many features to customize the experience. As one of the longest-running dating sites, it has a lot of members which also increases the chances of matching up with someone. Definitely a must try if you’re looking for a romantic connection or even just a new friend!