When I think of dating in high school, one game springs to mind: spin the bottle. It was the perfect way for painfully shy teens like myself to at least get a peck on the cheek from the person they were otherwise too scared to be within ten feet of. Ideal. Now one app has combined the fun of speed dating, the butterflies of spin the bottle, and the ease of online matchmaking. So, what is Spottle? Swiping right and left in the hope of meaningful conversation has become synonymous with modern online dating, but Spottle cuts through all of the awkwardness of opening lines and takes you immediately through to a chat with a complete stranger. If you are nostalgic as hell like me and miss the simplicity of letting a bottle and fate make all of your questionable dating decisions for you, then this could be the app for you.
Spottle is said to be aimed at the people who are bored of evenings spent swiping with no success, weeks of texting without meeting up, or every online dater’s nightmare — getting catfished. While I love nothing more than a good swiping session, it's hard to know if you are going to get the tingles with someone unless you see them face to face. While Spottle can’t physically put you in front of hot, eligible, singles, it does the next best thing.
Spottle allows users to play a live game of virtual spin the bottle. When the 'bottle' lands on someone, you enter a 30-second video chat with them to establish whether the attraction is there and whether you want to take it further. Just hearing about it gives me the nervous anticipation I had as a 14 year old. But there are other perks to this kind of dating. When you are busy all week, doing the most at work, and seeing your friends in your precious free time, messaging someone on a dating app in the fruitless attempt to organise a date can be time consuming and ultimately a little annoying. Spottle incorporates the immediacy of speed dating so that, once the bottle lands on someone, you will hopefully get an idea if there is an instant attraction. If not, you can just carry on playing.
The app was created by Max Rosenberg, Matt Cohen, and Drew Stanton. Rosenberg says: "Meeting people is hard. It’s exhausting, time consuming, and expensive going on Tinder dates, only to feel let down within the first 30 seconds of meeting. So we thought, why not meet your date before the date and have those 30 seconds from the comfort and safety of your own phone?" He continues:
"Swiping on profiles is superficial and incredibly inefficient. Spottle gives you a more fun and genuine experience by letting you 'meet' everyone before deciding if you're interested."
Spottle will officially launch in the Apple App Store on April 16 2019, and if you want to be part of the first game, it will all kick off on April 18.