Gaydar – i told you so

19 08 2010

it’s not often you’ll find me using the expression “i told you so”, but nearly a year and a half ago i had these harsh words for Gaydar – one of the largest ‘gay dating’ websites in the world – for sticking their head in the sand in the face of the ‘mobile revolution’ by charging a premium fee on top of their already-significant monthly/quarterly/etc paid membership fee, if you wanted access to a mobile-browser-optimised version of their website. wtf?

since then there’s been an explosion of ‘gay dating’ iPhone/iPad apps (they don’t like that term, they prefer ‘social networking’ – yeahwhatever) – most of them new, nimble upstarts with little to lose & everything to gain from ‘first mover’ opportunity – that’ve surely been eating into the big-boy’s revenue, particularly Grindr, who offer essentially the same basic service with the hugely engaging & useful ‘location awareness’ features, for free, or a few $/month for Push Notifications of messages & no ads.

well wadda ya know, Gaydar finally came out with an iPhone app a couple of months ago, and guess what? no premium fee to use it, over & above normal paid membership!  unfortunately version 1 was a pretty poor effort, but i guess the only way is up ;). (i haven’t looked at it since)

i’m aware that Manhunt.net – another of the web-based ‘big boys’ – also have an iPhone app in the works, and are working through the agony of complying with Apple’s puritanical ‘decency’ conditions.

the question remains though, is this too little too late?  i estimate it’ll be 6+ months before Gaydar’s iPhone app will reach some reasonable level of useful maturity, and you still need to be a paid member, a price well above any of the iPhone newcomers.  Manhunt remain to be seen on the mobile.

have the new kids on the iPhone block (and other mobile platforms) stolen too much mindshare for the big-boys to recover their losses?  or will the big-boy’s superior established large-scale infrastructure & reliability be matched by an eventual maturing of their iApp offerings and leave the new kids in second place?

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One response

26 12 2010
Jonathan Crutchley

Manhunt app has now been released on iPhone and Android. Check them out. Would like to know your opinion.




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