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OK Cupid revamps to be less like Tinder, more political

Just in time for Valentines Day (ugh, sorry), dating app OK Cupid is getting a makeover. Psych! Just kidding, the company is introducinga new version of its mobile app today, but OK Cupidsfull redesignwont actually roll out until March. Though the timing of the announcement is clearly manufactured, the overhaul itself is fairly significant. In addition to getting a whole newaesthetic, complete with updatedtypography and new illustrations, the apps feature set is being made over as well, in an effortto further differentiate itself from Tinders hot or not game.

The prior version of the OK Cupid app featured a section called Quickmatch, which was effectively OKCsown version of Tinder. In the new appout today, Quickmatch has been rebranded as DoubleTake, and is walking itself back from a focus only on the datersleading photo.

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Above: Old Quickmatch (left) vs New DoubleTake (right)

While youre still swiping to move through this matching interface, youre now being shown multiple photos all on one page, as well as various details about the personin question, including their profile text. The idea, the company explains, is to give users a deeper look into someones personality right from the start.

This new screen, which is also the apps main screen that loads upon first launch, will include up four photos, the username, age, location, percentage match, plus other details pulled out of from the user profile, like height, whether they have dogs, have kids, personality traits like friendly, energetic, organized, and more.

These are displayed alongside icons, like a paw print for dogs, or a beach ball for kids, for example.A brief user profile summary appears below.

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With DoubleTake, we show many more facets of a person were showing what makes people tick so that youll have better dates and better relationships, explains OK Cupid CEO Elie Seidman in a statement about the apps makeover. Every person has a story and instead of helping users speed up, DoubleTake slows them down within the swiping interface so that they can appreciate each others uniqueness, he added.

Seidman, formerly the co-founder and CEO of TripAdvisor-owned Oyster, came on board with OK Cupid in May of last year, with a goal of shifting the brand to one thats more focused on meaningful relationships, as compared with apps like Tinder, which are still often confused (or used) as tools for quick hookups. This is a tactic othersin the space have taken as well, including most recently Hinge, which pivoted to a new experience itself in October, alsoclaiming a renewed focus on real relationships.

DoubleTake was tested with select members ahead of todays public launch, and was found to have tripled the mutual matches, OK Cupid claims.

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Of course, it doesnt matter to OK Cupid parent company Match Group which dating app aesthetic you prefer, only that theyre notably differentfrom oneanother. Match Group owns not only Match.com and OKC, but also Tinder, Meetic, Twoo, OurTime, BlackPeopleMeet, and others.

In addition to thisslowed down matching, OK Cupid is also doubling down on its question-and-answer feature. Long one of the apps standout differentiators, the app will now receive annual updates to keep this section fresh with more relevant and timely questions that can help daters find people who share their values.

In this day and age, that means political values, it seems.

The new release includes 50 addedquestions, some of which are controversial topics for debate like how you feel about Trumps Muslim ban, whether you believe in climate change, or even how you feel about Trump himself.

There are also questions reflective of various dating focused topics, like ghosting.

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The upcomingrevamp, however, includes a new look-and-feel for OK Cupid across its platform on both web and mobile. Things will be organized a bit differently,but the most noticeable changes are the new typography and theillustrations.

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The company commissioned Berlin-based artist Jay Daniel Wright, who has done illustrations for The New York Times, Bloomberg Businessweek, and Die Ziet, to create unique designs to accompany the apps various sections. The illustrations are bright and colorful, and are meant to impart a modern and progressive vibe thats something a company founded in 2004 could probably use.

The updated OK Cupid is live today on iOS and Androidwith DoubleTake, butthe larger redesign is planned for March.

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Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/14/ok-cupid-revamps-to-be-less-like-tinder-more-political/