MIAMI HERALD - Feb 14 - The most popular are apps that use Global Positioning System to find a date near your typical hangout spot. Skout, an app for iPhone and Android, claims 3M active users. With an average user age of 25, the free app is more youth friendly than sites like eHarmony and Match.com. Such established sites have yet to incorporate such GPS tags; the idea of getting alerts from strangers who are physically nearby seems creepy and stalker-like to many users, says online dating business consultant Mark Brooks, editor of OnlinePersonalsWatch.com. Still, the category is growing. Grindr, an app for gay men, boasts 1.4M users and 300K log-ons a day, according to Grindr’s founder and CEO, Joel Simkhai. Though GPS-based tagging is this year’s hot trend, other technology-based matchmaking tactics may also facilitate finding the love of your life. For those who are shy, OmniDate.com lets users use an animated avatar of themselves and plops it into an animated chat room on the first date. OmniDate co-founder Ravit Abelman said it has been picked up by several dating sites, including Lavalife, TangoWire, JDate in Europe and the Facebook app Social Connect. She said it has been successful because it’s a way to break the ice beyond a bullet-list profile and lifeless e-mails.
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