Tag Archive for: Dating app

What We Learned From Building The PreVue Dating App

At NS804, we love developing apps like PreVue that positively impact users. PreVue is a dating app that breaks the mold of what users have come to expect from online dating and modern dating applications. Nowadays, popular options include the likes of Bumble, OkCupid, Tinder, and many others. And while these have revolutionized modern dating by allowing users to meet those outside of their ethnic backgrounds, social circles, and even geographic locations — they’ve also introduced a lot of problems. 

The founder & CEO of PreVue — Lucanus J. Grady — briefly described these problems in his mission statement: “Dating app profiles had become just this fabrication to attract a quantity of candidates like it was a game. And it’s just hard, right? So I just kept thinking, there must be a better way! How do we filter out all the nonsense, cut through the heavily-doctored pictures, the wordy biographies, and just the genuine lack of honesty?”

Grady’s assessment regarding the current state of the modern dating app holds true, and there’s a real need for a fresh approach. Fortunately, Grady did approach things differently when formulating PreVue, a video-based dating platform. With PreVue, users take a short 22-second video without filters, showing off their true selves. The nuances in their facial expressions and mannerisms provide a far more authentic picture of who they are than edited photos, biographies, or text messages. 

We helped bring PreVue to life and feel privileged to have worked closely with Grady on his innovative dating app concept. Our partnership on this exciting project has been a relatively smooth process. However, we did learn several important lessons that we’ll discuss in greater detail below.




Modern Dating In Crisis

Now, you may think that there are already too many dating apps flooding the marketplace — and that’s true. But have you asked yourself if these apps help or hinder users from dating successfully? And if you’ve been out of the dating pool for a while now, you may be shocked to learn that the modern dating scene isn’t very healthy, to put it lightly.

While apps such as Tinder make it incredibly easy for users to find matches in their area, that doesn’t mean these are quality matches. If anything, Tinder and many similar dating apps facilitate hook-up culture, where sexual encounters are at the forefront, and long-lasting relationships come last. Gen Z and Millenials in the younger age range may only be looking for short-term relationships or ‘situationships.’ And that’s perfectly fine for some but completely wrong for those wanting deep and meaningful relationships. 

Furthermore, things don’t look rosy for most American men under 30 who remain single. According to a study by the Pew Research Center, approximately 63% of men in this age bracket find themselves single compared to 34% of women. And if that wasn’t bad enough, fewer single American men are looking to date now than before the Covid pandemic (42% now versus 49% in 2019).

Things get worse still, as an overabundance of online pornography and OnlyFans models grab male attention and interest at a disturbingly high rate. And while we hope this trend will change at some point, it’s definitely an ominous sign that we can’t afford to ignore. From a societal and economic standpoint, it isn’t good if young men forgo dating and relationships, as this will lead to a demographic decline in the foreseeable future. 

How Does PreVue Solve Notable Problems?

The best and most successful apps solve problems that users often encounter. And as we’ve already covered in significant detail, modern dating is in crisis mode with plenty of problems. Moreover, the creator of PreVue, Lucanus J. Grady, has experienced the pain points of modern dating apps firsthand. With most dating apps, it’s too easy for users to enhance their looks via filters and present a false self through their biographies. 

And that’s why he set out to offer an alternative that allows users to date with intention, where they can see, hear, and get the vibe from a potential candidate before taking things further. Thus, it’s difficult for users on the PreVue platform to present themselves inauthentically, as the short form 22-second videos are great at conveying subtle changes in facial expressions and voices that accurately reveal the candidate’s appearance, emotions, and desirability. 

But another reason why video is such a powerful medium is that it’s become the number one way to distribute and consume content today. Platforms such as Instagram and TikTok have carved a path for creating and sharing short-form videos effectively, and it’s time that dating apps catch up! 

How Does PreVue Work? 

PreVue offers users a dead simple onboarding process that’s as frictionless as possible. This dating app only requires the most applicable information from the user, their location, and their dating preferences. Then, it’s time to film the 22-second-long video with no filters or uploads permitted. Once done, the user may access the portal with all candidates that match their criteria. Furthermore, PreVue will match users based on what they said and even the backgrounds in their videos. 

PreVue officially launched in Boston, MA, due to the city’s vibrant and ethnically diverse culture. This works well, as dating with intention is something that the people of Boston want in a dating app. And it’s a great success thus far, with over 7,000 downloads and 1,200 active users over the past two months. 

While it’s still early days, users have responded positively to PreVue. Many are happy with how much more natural matches feel compared to other dating apps in the marketplace. It’s also easier for users to initiate conversations due to how PreVue manages profiles, and there’s a refreshing lack of spam accounts and creepy users. 

And similarly to other dating apps in the marketplace, there’s a free version of PreVue available. However, users can opt for in-app purchases, such as PreVue Premier 1 Month at $19.99, Unlimited Connections 24h at $6.99, and Video Chat 1h at $2.99. 

What Surprised Us About The Target Demographic Of PreVue?

PreVue successfully eradicated issues commonly found in other dating apps, such as catfishing. And so far, it seems that users are having more meaningful interactions in PreVue than with other alternatives, which was one of the primary goals of this project all along.

However, we initially anticipated that college users between the ages of 20 and 25 would make up our target audience. But we resonated more with the young professional demographic instead.

At first, this was surprising, but it makes sense since younger professionals are more likely to seek long-term partners for fulfilling relationships. And PreVue’s video-based approach facilitates the pursuit of these types of relationships, as users can easily screen out the chancers, players, and other disingenuous candidates.



What Was The Development Process Like? 

The development process went smoothly, but we could have benefited from an entirely Agile approach. In hindsight, it would have been better if we released smaller feature sets since we’re now making changes on the fly based on user data and feedback we’ve obtained. 

That’s why at NS804, we always recommend that our clients scale back on their concepts to get their apps to market quicker. Users will always reveal what they want, and we can always pivot quickly based on user feedback. 

However, we did proceed with simple and clean code that was modular and flexible from the early stages of the project. If there’s one thing that every developer should know is that planning proper architecture saves a ton of time.  

Our development team includes four members, two founders, a marketing team, and a public relations (PR) team. While the development team may seem small, it’s actually the right size for this project and managed to complete it successfully. The build process took 12 months, which included a very long BETA to ensure we gathered enough feedback to launch the best product possible. But without the BETA and the additional scope, it would have taken around eight months. 

Which Programming Languages Did We Use During Development? 

NS804 is fundamentally a native mobile app developer. That means we use programming languages, frameworks, tools, and APIs for creating native apps for Android and iOS. We could choose hybrid mobile app development tools like Flutter or React Native to reduce development time and cost. However, that would result in lower-quality apps lacking the native look, feel, and performance users have come to expect. 

And given that PreVue is a dating app that must deliver video content regularly and consistently, we had to go native since performance is imperative. Thus, we chose Swift for developing the iOS version and Kotlin for the Android version.

Both Swift and Kotlin are modern, high-level, and statically typed languages that are easier to debug and maintain than the languages they’re gradually replacing, namely, Objective-C and Java. A side benefit of using Swift and Kotlin is that they integrate flawlessly with the latest user interface (UI) toolkits, such as SwiftUI and Jetpack Compose UI. And that allows us to create attractive and responsive UIs that look and feel native on a wide variety of modern mobile devices.   

We also used the Structured Query Language (SQL) for our back-end relational database. And Node.js, as it’s an efficient and powerful runtime environment for creating servers, modular applications, and even video streaming apps such as Netflix. It’s written using the JavaScript (JS) programming language, which has played a pivotal role in front-end web development.

How Crash Reporting And User Journeys Helped Us?

While we did not have any bugs reported, we did implement crash monitoring and user journeys built into the app. So we know if any issues arise before users report these to us, which allows us to take a proactive approach and fix these issues. 

The user journeys allow us to see where users may drop off during the process. And this allows us to refine and tailor our offering that will best suit end-user needs. The ultimate goal of the user journey is to determine the optimal path within the app that will enhance the user experience (UX). Ideally, users must reach their goals quickly and easily without being stumped by an unintuitive UI or other questionable design choices.

Due to our user-centric approach to design, we’ve regularly updated the UI to meet users’ needs. To date, our users benefit from a clean, slick, modern, and highly intuitive UI. And this allows them to engage with our dating app in a fun way without breaking their flow since the screen isn’t cluttered with text and any design elements that cause confusion.

What’s Next For PreVue?

PreVue has made a notable impact in a short space of time, and the future bodes well for our dating app. As we’ve already witnessed, there’s a real need for a platform that makes the dating experience much more honest and meaningful.

So, what have we got planned for PreVue moving forward? Currently, it’s only available in Boston and Washington DC. But we will open availability to new markets and expand our international footprint. Furthermore, we’ll use Machine Learning (ML) to enhance our existing matching algorithm. We started with a basic algorithm designed for maximum matches while the user base scales. 

It will be a learning experience as we use tools that improve the matching process over time. Our goal is to ensure that PreVue users will only have candidates appear in their feeds that align perfectly with what they’re looking for in potential partners. 

And speaking of partners, Lucanus J. Grady shared a few thoughts about his experience working with us: “Top Tier communication. Excellent relationship with the CEO. Always extremely knowledgeable and eager to help. Has provided assistance outside of the scope of responsibility and is an intangible member of our team. The company and its founder are now personal friends due to NS804’s core ethos and incredible professionalism.”

The Bottom Line

Working on PreVue, coupled with our close and fruitful relationship with our client, has made the development process an enjoyable and eye-opening journey. Furthermore, it’s a privilege to work with talented people that have all contributed to a dating app that conforms with our client’s visionary approach. Contact https://www.ns804.com/ today to learn how we’ll help you create phenomenal and trailblazing dating apps!  

How Much Does It Cost To Make An Online Dating App

Whether we like to admit it or not, most of us have used a dating app at some point. After all, it’s one of the most convenient ways to meet people for possible romantic encounters. People that we would most likely never meet or dare to chat up in a social setting. 

But for many, particularly younger users, these apps aren’t strictly for dating. Millennials and those in their late teens love using apps such as Tinder for casual hookups. As of January 2021, Tinder garnered 6.44 million downloads by mostly male users in 196 countries. And while many of these users seek sexual intimacy with no strings attached from a Tinder match, 13.6% have ended up engaged or married.

Of course, Tinder isn’t the only game in town. Regardless of its popularity, it simply can’t fulfill the needs of every target user. Someone looking for a serious relationship won’t use this particular dating app, given how it incentivizes casual relationships. And this is great because it opens up opportunities for alternatives. Below, we’ll take a deeper look at this market segment and reveal the cost of development.

Notable Frustrations Of The Dating Game

Some people are social butterflies or move in the right social circles. Thus, they face little difficulty in finding a date and enjoying fulfilling romantic relationships. But that’s some people! The hard truth is that most people don’t have the necessary social skills, cachet, and circle of friends to open up exciting dating opportunities.

And it gets even worse! For those living in the boonies, dating opportunities could be next to zero. Without the amenities of the big city, such as bars, coffee shops, cinemas, theaters, theme parks, gymnasiums, restaurants, and nightclubs, few opportunities exist to meet people in the real world.

And what about those hard-working professionals that do live in the big city? Sadly, many of these individuals seldom have the time to use these amenities to meet people. Or when they do, they’ll be lucky to meet people that are a good match for them.

The Early Days Of Online Dating 

During the mid-90s, the first online dating websites emerged. Kiss.com and Match.com allowed online users to meet strangers and form relationships from their home or work computers. It was a convenient and safe way to initiate romantic relationships with people from similar and dissimilar backgrounds. And during the later part of the 90s, the internet quickly became inundated with a plethora of dating websites.

These websites impacted the cultural milieu considerably. And to such an extent, that 1998’s “You’ve Got Mail” movie shed some light on romantic relationships formed online. But this didn’t mean that online dating was regarded as an acceptable way to meet others. Quite the opposite, during the 90s and 2000s, there was a stigma associated with online dating. Those that used these sites were labeled as either desperate or socially inadequate. Unfortunately, some of this negative sentiment is still around today but to a lesser degree.

Why The Dating App Is A Game Changer

We need to understand that these dating sites appeared when the internet was still in its infancy. Neither the internet nor online dating played a significant role in most people’s lives, especially during the 90s. But with the advent of the smartphone and its wide adoption globally, the internet became accessible to the masses. 

From 2010 onwards, smartphone users became accustomed to downloading apps that fulfill specific needs. If they needed to do banking, they’d download their bank’s app. And if they needed to order a pizza, they’d download their local pizzeria’s app if one was available. And similarly, those that wanted to engage in some online flirting wouldn’t be left out in the cold. In 2012, Tinder launched as the ultimate matchmaking app for young singles.

Now, many blame Tinder for promoting and perpetuating the hookup culture. And this isn’t necessarily untrue. Tinder’s primary focus is to match people based on their physical attraction, determined if they swipe right on each other’s photos. Additional factors that may determine a match include age range and location, and both parties are notified if they have friends in common. 

It’s an effective system that delivers a near-endless number of matches for those seeking quick, casual relationships. At the very least, it’s speed dating on steroids, and it’s easy to pinpoint why it’s so successful. It makes finding prospective dates within a user’s location a near painless process. And while users can and do reject others by swiping left, this doesn’t stop two-way matches from materializing eventually.

Key Features Of A Dating App 

Now, let’s take a look at what makes up a dating app. We’ll use Tinder as the baseline, as it’s pretty much the gold standard as far as dating apps on Android and iOS are concerned. 

The following list briefly describes the functionality necessary to make a Tinder-like dating app:

  • Authentication – Ensure that users don’t create spam accounts by requiring them to log in with their social media accounts. Then, tighten account security by implementing the OpenID Connect protocol or OAuth 2.0 authorization framework.
  • User Interface (UI) – It’s crucial to keep your UI clean and simple. Users would rather spend their time finding new matches than trying to navigate complex UI.
  • User Experience (UX) – Tinder’s innovative swipe functionality is user-friendly and part of what makes the app so successful. Furthermore, the app employs gamification features, making it more addictive and fun to use than its competitors.
  • Matchmaking Algorithm – Tinder is nothing without its trailblazing matchmaking algorithm. Ensure that your dating app effectively matches users based on their location, recent activity, and gender preferences, at the very least.
  • Location Targeting – Utilize analytics data, Google maps, and GPS to determine user locations.
  • Text Messaging – Once users match, they’ll want to chat with each other. Therefore, a robust text messaging service built within the app is essential.
  • Push Notifications – It’s crucial to notify users about special events, successful matches, and whether others are looking at their profiles.
  • Database Backend – You’ll need a place to store user data and payment information. That’s why you’ll need to set up a database and wisely choose the technology stack that best suits your needs.

Cost Of Development

Building a dating app with a core feature set that closely resembles the above can cost between $60,000 and $150,000, provided development time is between 2-5 months. However, the cost of development can exceed $150,000 and even reach $300,000 if additional features are requested and development time is between 5-10 months. Carefully consider what platform-specific features and integrations you’ll need for Android, iOS, and the web before commencing development, as these will impact development costs.

The Bottom Line

Developing an online dating app can be an exciting endeavor and one that can positively impact users. However, the online dating segment is well-established and quite competitive. That’s why it’s crucial not to cut corners and implement all the features that users have come to expect from market leaders, such as Tinder. Contact us today to learn how NS804 can help you make the kind of apps users will fall in love with!