Coffee Meets Bagel: TinderLite?
Yes, the name is strange..and decidedly non-sexy, but hey, if we can get used to dorky dating site names like "OKcupid" or "Zoosk", Coffee Meets Bagel will soon be rolling off our tongues. Well, at least if the Kang sisters have their way.
In 2012, sisters Arum, Daroon, and Soo found themselves singing the same sad song as so many other attractive, highly successful, and highly educated singles in a city setting-- Why are we having so much trouble meeting other decent people like us?
(Apparently they aren't alone-- check out hi-falutin' Sparkology and their elite-driven dating mission)
In response, the trio collaborated to create a free dating app, recently released on both iOS and Android platforms, borrowing the same principle as Tinder, with a different goal. Instead of endless and addictive swiping, CMB offers only one match per day, at noon. Yes, you read that right: one match (called a Bagel) per day, delivered during your lunch break.
Interested in the person? Swipe Like. Not so much? Pass, and wait until the following day for your next Bagel.
Only for the Facebook Friendly
Coffee Meets Bagel, like most dating apps these days, utilizes your Facebook account with the double goal of identity confirmation and increasing compatibility by detecting possible mutual connections.
Problem: unless you live in a metropolitan area with many local Facebook friends, you may not find matches from your immediate geographical area. Members complain that they are often connected with Bagels several hours or even states away. If there aren't enough members in your area, you may not be offered a match at all.
Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace
After receiving your Bagel, you must respond within 24 hours before it poofs away, possibly never to appear as an offering again. If there is a mutual Like, CMB connects you via a text message from an internal dedicated text platform so members don't need to reveal their digits, and even offers a new featured private phone line for added security.
A Bakers Dozen?
If, despite your best attempts to be patient and stick to one Bagel offering per day, you find you need more variety on the menu or you live in a sparsely populated area, don't fret: Coffee Beans are earn-able or purchasable currency which can be used at the Bean Shop for the following menu items:
- "Open Sesame" unlocks the identity of mutual friends
- "Rematch" Missed a bagel? You can use this as a second chance to match with someone.
- "Mirror Mirror" tells you your score and rank on the site.
- "Give" is free... Pass your bagel to a friend who you think may like it more than you.
- "Passing" a bagel gives you 1 Bean.
- Adding suggestions for someone's profile gives you an extra Bean.
Criticism: some have criticized the option to purchase more beans and Bagels, which then "buys" opportunity to contact the best looking folks on the site, thus allowing the one thing the site was designed to avoid.
Notoriety: Coffee Meets Bagel received notoriety when they were featured on Shark Tank in January 2015. Despite being turned down for being cagey about revealing the exact number of their multi-million members, CMB has grown exponentially since its inception in 2012, is now operable in all cities, and as of 3/10/15, in Hong Kong.
What We Like:
- Limits of 1 potential match per day force you to really take a look at what's in front of you, rather than automatically dismissing and moving on to search for the next better thing
- If you're willing to focus on one person a day, this app is perfect for singles who are sick and tired of the instant gratification and mind-numbing swiping of Tinder, or the overwhelmingly time consuming navigation needed on sites like Match or eHarmony.
- Perhaps you just want to take a low key break from the game of dating, but aren't quite ready to disconnect entirely? Coffee Meets Bagel offers the equivalent of the "slow food" movement-- focus entirely on the plate in front of you, without the distractions of IM pinging, multiple players emailing you, or waiting for the next best thing.
- Limits the amount of spamming women receive
What We Don't Like:
- Having to use Facebook. We're kind of over this, and find it very limiting.
- Ability to "buy up" opportunities to obtain more than 1 daily match per day, or to approach a particular person.
- Poor feedback about customer service response.