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The Bumble Rebrand has divided Gen Z daters

I think we can all agree that dating apps are getting old. Be honest: by now we’ve all fallen victim to mindless, bored swiping and letting our messages expire with little to no regret. However, recently Bumble recognized Gen Z’s exhaustion when it comes to dating apps and teased a rebranding of the app. And while some Gen Zers are hopeful about Bumble’s rebrand, others are inclined to swipe left.

On April 30, Bumble debuted a new look for the app after a week of cryptic messages, teasing a rebrand. What was once a bright yellow, cheerful-looking, bee-inspired interface has been replaced by a clean, white and gray aesthetic with some signature yellow accents. It’s like those big, modern apartment buildings popping up in your city are an app.

But that is not everything. Bumble also introduced several features to encourage stronger connections with daters on the app: “Opening Moves,” which allow women to ask a post-match question that their connections can respond to within 24 hours, and “Dating Intentions,” which now includes a variety of romantic relationship choices, including long-term relationships, life partner, fun, casual dating, intimacy without commitment, ethical non-monogamy, and marriage.

Bumble has also adjusted its algorithm to include a ‘For You’ set of four curated, relevant profiles based on preferences and previous matches, as well as moving profile matches and shared interests higher on profiles, and increasing photo requirements to four photos.

Current Bumble user (and her Campus Wellness writer) Avery, 23, says she was “let down” by the app’s rebrand. “Maybe I was too optimistic, but I expected a complete overhaul, like completely new features,” she says. “I know what the difference (Bumble) makes is having women make the first move, but the whole marketing campaign was that women were ‘exhausted’ so that made me think they were going to let men make the first move in some capacity.”

During opening movements do If men were more likely to make the first move, Avery believes Bumble should have gone a little further, instead of putting all the responsibility on women. “I’m glad they integrated that feature, but it certainly wasn’t anything major.”

Breanna*, 22, was also disappointed with the app’s rebrand and hoped Bumble would include more features to make online dating safer for women. “In my experience, I never realized how many creeps and would-be groomers lurk in plain sight on that app,” she says. “Part of me feels like dating apps like Bumble create a forced relationship dynamic, and it doesn’t feel as authentic.”

RaeAnn, 26, met her partner on Bumble, pre-rebrand, in 2019. But if these features existed back then, she would have been happy to use them. “I think (Opening Moves) only makes the women first position stronger,” she says. “The stress of thinking of something to say is completely eliminated. You can also set it to ask a question, which automatically excludes the losers.”

RaeAnn is also a fan of the new dating intentions feature. “I feel like Bumble, more than other apps, occupies a strange space: Tinder is clearly for hook-ups, Hinge is clearly for relationships, but Bumble could be that too. So I think it’s great that they’re doing this,” she says.

Users are also divided on Twitter/X.

So, where do you stand? Do you swipe right on the new Bumble, or left?

*Names have been changed.