The more you experiment with Tingle, the more credits you earn for messaging – its developers claim this stops spammers and over-flirting but it also monetises Tingle via in-app purchases, meaning you’ll spend to keep in private contact with a catch.Best for long-distance relationships: Between (i OS/Android, free) Between offers a private vault for storing and sharing memories with someone special.This includes red- hot conversations and pics you wouldn’t want your mother to see, to more practical uses such as shared calendars for planning dates and travel.
There are alternatives to Tinder or Grindr after all, says James Day Best for no-strings sex: Down (i OS/Android, free) Down is a rebranded version of Bang With Friends, which gives some idea where this is going, but with a new name comes new features.
You can now distinguish between those you want to date and those you want to do the dirty with by swiping up or down – you can swipe back if you accidentally skip someone.
Skipping those you don’t fancy remains anonymous unless they’ve liked you (awkward).
Social media plays a huge part here, firstly through Facebook friends, then via friends of Facebook friends.
Best of all, Between offers a lock function that’s activated if your phone is lost, stolen, or falls into the wrong hands.
Best for gay guys: Scruff (i OS/Android/Windows Phone, free) While Scruff offers a worringly long price list of in-app purchases for maximising man-to-man action, it also excels in free content.This means unlimited videos, photos and text messaging, finding guys near you and further afield, a search and tracking tool to see who has been checking you out, and a ‘would like to meet’ feature where men must meet your criteria.A word to the wise: this makes it way, way scarier than Tinder and yet somehow more exciting.Best for private encounters: Tingle (i OS, free) Tingle lets you talk or text without revealing a name and number.Specify your height, relationship level and a pic or two, and the app finds potential partners nearby without pinpointing a location.Once you’ve winked at someone and the feeling is mutual, the lines of communication are well and truly open.