Use of Web and mobile dating platforms have been steadily increasing over the past few years and now 15 percent of Americans – almost 50 million people – admit to heading online to find that special someone. Or just someone for the night.
This growth, identified in Pew’s latest survey, has been particularly boosted by apps like Tinder and Happn, which had been used by just 3 percent of people in 2013, and are now used by nine percent of those surveyed. That rises to 22 percent among 18 to 24s.
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And it’s the 18 to 24s, as well as people over 50, who’ve taken most rapidly to trying to get laid using the internet. A full quarter of all young adults now admit to online dating, which has tripled since 2013.
But there’s a class divide in the online dating world: you’re more likely to online date if you’re richer or have been to college. Almost 20 percent of college grads use online dating platforms, while just 10 percent of high school grads do.
Plus, almost half of college grads say they know someone in a long-term relationship or getting married who met online, but that drops to 18 percent among those with a high school diploma or less.
People who earn between $30,000 and $75,000 are the most prolific online daters, closely followed by those who make $75,000-plus, with those on less than $30,000 the least likely to use the Web for dating.
You’re also more likely to online date if you live in the city, rather than the country.
People who haven’t used online dating are more likely to think it’s dangerous and it might make them look desperate, so perhaps there’s still a bit of an image problem that it has to overcome if it’s going to reach the masses.
Online daters say it’s all about efficiently meeting more great people, although almost a third now admit that it might be keeping them from settling down. There’s always someone else just another swipe away, after all, unless you live in the sticks.
If you live in the city: head online for rich pickings.