Parent company Match Group previously announced it would quit the country by June 30
Dating app Tinder stopped working in Russia on Friday, according to multiple users who reported they encountered an error message when trying to log into their accounts. In addition, Tinder is no longer available in the Russian App Store and Google Play Store.
Some determined users, however, reported on Twitter that the service continues to work in Russia via VPN.
According to Russian social media, a group of Tinder enthusiasts staged a funeral for the app in Sochi following the announcement of the app’s withdrawal from the country. People dressed in mourning clothes laid flowers at an improvised electronic monument and made farewell speeches.
Tinder owner Match Group announced its intention to quit the country early last month, citing human rights concerns.
“We are committed to protecting human rights. Our brands are taking steps to restrict access to their services in Russia and will complete their withdrawal from the Russian market by June 30, 2023,” the company said in a statement on May 2.
Tinder reportedly earned more than $14 million in Russia annually. The app was the fifth most popular dating service in the country. According to Statista, last year Tinder was installed by 3.5 million Russian users. However, by March this year, Tinder’s Russian userbase had dropped to 1.1 million, according to Mediascope. The outflow was attributed to the fact that Russians lost the ability to pay for services on the app with a bank card or through ApplePay and GooglePay systems due to Western sanctions. However, their accounts were still payable through mobile operators, as well as through special gift cards purchased from non-Russian accounts.
As of March, the leader among dating apps in Russia was ‘DrugVokrug’ with more than 2.1 million users, followed by ‘Mamba’ (roughly 2 million), ‘Fotostrana’ (1.3 million) and Tabor (1.2 million).
Last month, reports emerged that Russian internet major VKontakte was developing its own dating application to replace Tinder. According to Vedomosti, the app would be linked directly to its popular social network, and could be launched as early as this summer.
Tinder is the latest in a slew of international businesses that have decided to withdraw from Russia due to the pressure of Ukraine-related sanctions. Dating services Badoo, Bumble and Fruitz stopped working in the country last year.
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