Today, our world is moving more and more online, and current trends show that the future is digital. Coronavirus has drastically changed our social interaction habits. We are used to chatting with friends and colleagues in offices, bars and restaurants, but now we are forced to stay home, and communicate with the outside world through a phone or a computer. And this is triggering a radical change in which people are valuing human contact more. People require more immediate, engaging and innovative ways for facilitating interactions anytime, anywhere.
For those who produce digital products, the challenge is to intercept such new ways of social interaction by overcoming the barrier of social distancing.
This must lead to a new way of developing apps, focused on providing the user with a more immersive and participative experience, where human interactions are put at the center. We must give the user increasingly immediate and engaging forms of social interaction, where people are able to chat live, change experiences and emotions, to interact online.
It’s no surprise that Business Insider reports that the Match Group, the largest dating app group with over 45 apps (including Tinder, Hinge, Match…), recorded a 15% increase in new subscribers in the second quarter of 2020.
Even if the pandemic led to general growth for the dating app business, it also brings new challenges and difficulties. But every problem has its own solution. For example, to overcome the problem of social distancing, Tinder is providing a new way for people to interact via video dating. Normally, when companies want to build such features, they have to start an entire process that implies weeks of work, bringing additional cost, effort, and time.
Readymade APIs can speed up the process allowing an entire company to spare energy, time, and money. Obviously, while some features of your app can be outsourced, others must be built-in-house. Normally core features of an app, the ones that really make the difference, have to be built in-house. But nowadays a surprising number of APIs allow us to easily apply very powerful features. Deciding what can be done with external APIs and what API to use can go as far as changing an entire app design and development process.
Therefore a preliminary, wise choice is highly recommended. And since it can be difficult to make such a choice, we at CometChat are here to help you!
Registration and Authentication
1. FusionAuth - Registration Features
“The core of FusionAuth is a set of RESTful APIs that allow you to quickly integrate login, registration and advanced User management features into your application. The FusionAuth web UI is built upon these APIs, with the exception of managing API keys everything in the UI is available through an API.”
The most popular features are Single Sign-on (SSO), Passwordless login, Social Logins, Registration Forms, and many others.
Authentication is a very important feature for every app, in online dating, it prevents users from creating multiples or/and fake profiles and improves the overall professional public image of the app.
Takes approx. 5 minutes to setup and its pricing ranges from $125 / Month to $2500 / month.
2. Zero Bounce - Email Validation Service
Zero Bounce, a very powerful tool that will allow you to validate (clean), “score”, test and monitor your user list. They also have an AI-driven API that helps you validate your users. In dating apps, as in many other things, it is very important to have good management of users, especially emails. Zero Bounce will help you validate users to clean out fake profiles, and spare management costs (maintaining a huge mailing list can be expensive), reduce your spam complaints and finally, to increase that open rate! Also, their service will allow you to detect where your mails will land (inbox, spam or not delivered) and to keep testing and adjusting until you reach the inbox. They also alert you if your domain / IP is blacklisted. This feature is available for freemium users.
Its API is really fast to set up and available for free for up to 100 emails. Higher plans range from $16 to $1755 based on number of emails.
3. MessageBird - Verify API
“MessageBird's Verify API enables you to verify a mobile phone number with two-factor authentication. It confirms identity to secure accounts, authenticate transactions, and prevent fraud with a REST API for two-factor authentication (2FA) and one-time passwords (OTP).”
Three core advantages are scalability, coverage (global) and integration. MessageBird will allow you to prevent fraud by verifying the phone number inserted that activates a global 2FA in your app. They can send SMS or voice messages in more than 26 languages. Also, you will be sure that your message gets delivered to the provided number with the help of a special token provided for each verification.
Lots of Tutorials. Dashboard is easy to set up. Free up to 50 active contacts, $50/month up to 500 and $150 for 1500 contacts. Works with Java, Node, PHP, Python, Ruby, Go and C#. The main companies that use this product are Facebook, Uber and Deliveroo. With over 450 000 developers using the service.
4. One Signal - Push Messages
“OneSignal is a fast and reliable service to send in-app push notifications, and emails to your users on mobile and web, including content management platforms like WordPress and Shopify”
Core features are mobile, web, email and in-app push notifications. This service will provide you real-time reporting, A/B testing, segmentation, automated messaging, intelligent delivery and other incredible services!
Having a notification system in your dating app is very important to be sure that your users never miss a good match or a new message in your brand new chat system (built with CometChat obviously). You can use in-app messages to improve the user experience or mobile and web push notifications to attract and retain users.
One Signal takes merely 15 minutes to setup and offers a free plan. Paid plans start from $15/month and scale up according to the number of users and features.
Works with Java, Node, PHP, Python, Ruby, Go and C#. Trusted by more than 1 million devs.
5. Google Maps Platform - The masters of geolocation
“Create real-world, real-time experiences with the latest maps, routes, and places features from google maps platform. Built by the Google team for developers everywhere.”
Lots of features for maps (embedded maps, street View imagery, Elevation...), Routes (Directions, Roads…) and places (Geocoding, Geolocation, Time zones…).
A geolocation system in your dating app is crucial, and for this reason, we have to rely on a great service like google. All the big dating apps, like Tinder or OkCupid, have integrated this feature when they started going viral. It reflects the primary role of dating apps, allowing people to meet in real life. Also, the ability to localize your users is crucial when building your match algorithm.
Lots of features to get lost in, but setup should be quick 🚀. $200 free monthly usage. Then payment for maps, routes and places. For the reputation, that’s Google, everyone knows google.
6. CometChat - Engage your users with built-in chat!
And here it comes to our unique offer to software development companies, our solution quickly connect your users with each other. Our robust suite of cloud-hosted text, voice, and video calling solutions, ranging from simple drag-and-drop plugins to UI Kits, APIs, and fully customizable SDKs, plus a host of unique ready-to-use extensions, will seamlessly integrate onto your website and apps quickly and securely, saving you countless hours and resources, dramatically growing engagement on your website. We allow you to quickly build a reliable & full-featured chat experience into any mobile or web app. Our chat SDKs and APIs are made specifically to help you ship faster and to be completely flexible.
CometChat is really easy and fast to set up - within minutes. Clear documentation, and lots of tutorials make your experience even more seamless. CometChat’s APIs are free for up to 25 users and our paid plans start at $149 / month for 1000 users and scale as users increase.
Fully adaptable with React, Angular, Vue, iOs, Java and Kotlin, PHP, Laravel, Ionic and WordPress! Trusted by over 50 000 customers, with 10+ years of experience.
7. Imgix - Image processing
Imgix transforms, optimizes, and intelligently caches your entire image library for fast websites and apps using simple and robust URL parameters.”
The API guides you through the process of managing, transforming, optimizing and delivering your images to the user. Images are a core feature of Dating apps, not only for the user profile picture but also to implement the ability for your user to add other photos and make your app more social and so, more active.
Easy setup - Professional plan at $3/1000 Images, the minimum amount is $10 per account per month. Billion of images served daily. Used by Unsplash Kickstarter, Product Hunt, Eventbrite.
8. Facebook Graph API - Interact with Facebook in your app
The Graph API is a way for apps to read and write to the Facebook social graph. It’s the one that makes all the others work, and is the primary way to get data into and out of the Facebook platform. It's an HTTP-based API.
Facebook is the biggest and the most influential social media, allowing users to interact with their existing account can really improve the visibility of your app. You can use their service to add a Facebook login to your app or to allow the user to share content in it directly on Facebook. That’s a good way to improve the visibility of your app.
They also provide other services such as “Facebook Analytics” or ads for your app (always important, especially in social apps).
9. Random Profile - Randomly generate profiles
Single-use API that randomly generated profiles of users for quick and efficient database testing. Includes random address, name, date of birth, bank info, credit card number, weight, height, occupation. The API returns parameters that fit in different packages (General, Financial, or “Physical”) with different info for each. This API can be very useful in the testing phase of your app development. Rather than spending hours creating sample data, you can quickly use their profiles.
Easy to Setup and possibility to test the API directly on the website. Fully free (unlimited requests). The average latency is 436ms. Supported by Rapid API.
10. Google Analytics - Data everywhere!
The Master service to collect, configure, and analyze your data. Google Analytics is built upon a powerful data reporting infrastructure and the API (v4) gives you access to the full power of its platform. The key features of the API are metric expressions, multiple date ranges, cohorts and lifetime value, and multiple segments in a single request.
Google Analytics is crucial for every business that wants to generate insights from their data.
Quick setup and an important community to help you (lots of resources). You have limits and quotas (quite difficult to reach) that can be expanded by completing a form.
The two most important limits are 50,000 requests per project per day and 10 queries per second (QPS) per IP address. It works with just about everything.
11. CleverTap - Analytics to marketing
“CleverTap is a customer retention platform that provides the functionality to integrate app analytics and marketing.”
The platform will help you increase user engagement by tracking the users’ actions and analyzing how people use your app. It also helps you segment users based on their actions and run targeted campaigns to these segments. It also allows you to analyze each campaign to understand its effect on user engagement and business metrics. Their REST API lets you create, read, update, and delete data in CleverTap.
Documentation can be long to read but the setup should be quick. Free even if only 1000 event records can be sent per API call. The maximum number of event types per account is 512 and for each event type, the maximum number of properties is 256. The number of events submitted per account across those event types is unlimited. CleverTap has over 10,000 mobile apps powered.
Specific to Dating Apps
Love Calculator API enables users to enter a name and the name of a partner/lover/crush to find Love compatibility & chances of a successful love relationship. When sending your two names the API returns a score (from 0 to 100%) that is meant to be an indication of a match in terms of love, based on the names of two people. It’s a young (developed in 2021) single-purpose API. You also have a result string that varies depending on the score.
This API can help you build your matching algorithm or give visual feedback to the user when trying to connect with other people.
Can be trickier to set up as it’s not a fully working API. Fully free for now.
Provided by TextMei, this API returns the percentage chance that someone has a crush on you given a body of text as a form data parameter. This kind of crush detector predicts using AI what the conversation will likely turn into. Sending the messages (anonymously) to their AI via the API, they will use the words to determine whether this relationship would end up being platonic or romantic. For example, it will come back with “Sympathetic friend” or Passionate lover”.
Easy to Setup and possibility to test the API directly on the website. Free Basic plan up to 4 / day quota, Pro plan at $900/Month with a 10000 / month quota. Supported by Rapid API.
Building your own app doesn't have to be about you and your team building every single feature. Using API services such as these will reduce your overall development effort and allow your team to focus on the core features needed to scale up your business. CometChat is committed to providing you the best chat API service to build full fledged text voice and video chat into your apps with minimum effort.
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About the Author
Hello World, My name is Dev-Lorenzo Satta Chiris 👋🏻 I'm a young man working to be a full stack developer. My goal is to create a programming community for exchanging ideas and foster innovation. Blogger at dev.to, I send a weekly newsletter about programming and productivity tips!