The concept of an application for smartphones is a modern invention, but the need for human interaction and matching with strangers based on our personal likes/dislikes, has existed for several centuries.
It all started in 1695 when British newspapers started publishing the first personal ads. In the 1700’s homosexuals started using these ads for their own safety, as a discrete way of meeting people.
Later on, in the 1920’s lonely World War One soldiers would use similar ideas to seek pen pals. In 1965 new technology was emerging and a team of Harvard undergrads created Operation Match, the world’s first computer dating service. Operation Match was $3 and people could answer questionnaires and match with other members. Dating Mate was launched in 1968 by students at MIT.
There was a clear internet explosion during the 90’s and the cyber-dating industry started to rapidly grow. Match.com, Jdate, and LavaLife started to appear. Later on, eHarmony (2000), Ashley Madison (2002), OkCupid (2004), Crazy Blind Date (2007) grindr (2009), Tinder (2012) Bumble (2014) and many many more!