Switched: The new app for Kinksters.

Switched is an app for kinksters.
Switched App (Images are models supplied courtesy of Switched)

Switched app launched on 28 April of 2023 after two and half years of development by a team of only two queer kinksters working in their spare time in the evening and weekends. Finally, they launched “a modern app for gay kinksters today”. They really care about the Kinkster community and hope that everyone will make Switched their new home. QX spoke to the guys to find out more about Switched.

gay hookup app Switched What inspired you to create the kinkster dating app SWITCHED, and how has it been received?

Switched was created out of the need to create a new and modern space for kinksters to socialise and meet likeminded individuals.

Kinksters started being shadow banned on social media platforms, and more recently Meta suspended kinky Instagram users without good reason (now embarrassingly poorly reversed). Other apps are old and haven’t seen updates in years, and have a limited and archaic view of kink as a scale between Active <-> Passive (if one is present at all). 

Switched solves all this by offering fully authentic profiles with an at-a-glance visual representation of their interests, a new matchmaking algorithm, gorgeous galleries and discover interfaces, and a timeline for users to connect with others and join conversations. The app is modern, responsive and feels like it belongs in 2024. It’s not perfect but we’re only a few months old.

Switched has seen 23k+ users created so far, of which 19k+ are active. It’s a big number for a platform that’s only just launched, but not huge yet – it’s just a matter of time. Demand for Switched has been incredible and far exceeded our expectations. And the feedback has been incredible.

How do you ensure users’ privacy on the SWITCHED app, and how do you handle
user data and ensure it is protected from unauthorised access?

Protecting our users, their data and their privacy are right at the top of our many priorities. In fact, before Switched was designed, we’ve written down our values which include Integrity, Respect and Consent.

Not only have we worked with a team of expert lawyers to draft out our Terms of Use and Service and our Privacy and Cookie Notice based on those values and protect our users and data, but we are also business partners with Microsoft who we contract for our entire infrastructure. Microsoft’s technology is one of the best in the world, including their cloud services and we pay for additional security scans of our ongoing solution. It’s all very expensive, but we are not prepared to compromise on our users security.

“Finally: a modern app for gay kinksters today.”

How do you process user verification and ensure all users are genuine?

We’ve recently rolled out our Verification service for title holders as a first offering. We’ve sponsored several title holder contests across the world with prizes that entitle the title holder to claim their Verification checkmark badge on the app.

We’ve also partnered with BLUF Club to allow all our users to link up and verify their BLUF account on Switched. It’s been a dream of ours to work together with BLUF, one of the most recognisable and respected leather institutions in the world and we’re very happy to be able to make this feature available to our users. Once verified, users will have a BLUF badge on their profiles with their unique BLUF number, at no cost.

We don’t currently offer Verification to the general public, but it’s something that we’d like to do in the future.

switched is a dating app How can users set specific preferences within their profiles to ensure
compatibility with potential matches?

We’ve implemented a concept called the Switched Core, which is a visual representation of the user’s interests. It takes inspiration from the hanky code and is a variation of it for the digital world. ‘Give’ is on the left, and ‘receive’ is on the right, and users can use this at a glance view to get a conversation started. Switched is not just for matchmaking, it also works for finding people who have similar interests to yours. We often hear from our users that they’ve made new friends on Switched because they had something in common.

That said, kink is a broad and subjective topic. Going into it we knew that describing a user’s interests and then matching with others would be one of our greatest challenges. It’s taken us 5 iterations of the Switched Core to get it right.

What other features does your app have tailored explicitly for the modern kinkster community that set you apart from other apps?

What makes Switched unique is the Switched Core, where users can select and showcase their interests, no matter whether they are on the giving or receiving end or both, and use it to match with others. No other app gives users such powerful ability to make their profiles a true representation of themselves. Instead, apps focus on an Active to Passive scale that fails to capture the nuances of what everyone is into: where does a bondage top who is an anal bottom fit in a single scale from Active to Passive? The Switched Core also gives users an opportunity to visually represent things that they love, and others that they would like to try. It’s a great way to establish consent and get the conversation started.

gay hookup app for kinksters Switched also borrows elements from other social networks such as a timeline, a discover
feature, and a daily matches. Our timeline is rather simple at the moment and only displays content in chronological order, but we’re working on an update that’ll bring it more in line with other social network apps with a ‘For you’ system and other interactive features.

And because we think it’s fun, we’re introducing a series of features that we think our users will like such as:

  • community groups (much like Facebook groups) where groups can have their own separate timeline, events, polls and more
  • business accounts to bring event organisers, retailers and sex educators close to our userbase and vice-versa if they choose to
  • customisable profile themes/skins (e.g. leather, pup, rubber, and special collections that we’re working with community artists on)
  • profile add-ons such as a chastity tracker that other users can interact with to add days to the “sentence”
  • videos on timeline and more Instagram like ability to customise pictures and videos (although this might take some time)

How do you ensure the app remains a safe space for all users, regardless of their level of experience or comfort with kink, and how do you handle user reports about inappropriate behaviour?

A lot of it is down to how users connect on the app. Users can say what they’re interested in, and to what level: Love it, Enjoy, Have tried, Would try. This is immediately visible to other users and helps establish consent and get the conversation started as it all begins with what users have in common. It saves a lot of time and avoids awkward conversations trying to figure out if people are into the same things as you and we’re told by our users that the numbers of “flakes” is reduced. 

As for inappropriate behaviour, the app has the proactive and reactive moderation features with users being able to report users, messages, and any user generated content.

Many safe spaces, such as bars and clubs for kinksters, have closed over the years. How do you hope to build a sense of community?

It’s a tough one, because IRL spaces are important, and without them we miss out on a lot. I don’t think that any app offers a replacement for IRL spaces, but what they do well is connect people from everywhere in the world in a single, bigger, virtual space. With the introduction of event listings and community groups in 2024, we really hope that Switched will make it easier for kinksters to find local places, get a group of friends together from the app and go together. And the community group feature, in particular, definitely aims to support local community groups with online tools such as listing their own events, their own timeline, member admission, polls and more.

Are there any plans to expand SWITCH’s features? How will you handle user feedback for improvement?  

We’re constantly working on the three streams of work: 1) bug fixing, 2) improving on exiting features, and 3) introducing new features from our roadmap. We’re influenced by user feedback in our decisions and tend to prioritise bug fixing over anything else. That’s not to say the app is perfect, but we hope to give our users the best experience possible as we continue to grow our user base.

Join SWITCHED now https://switchedapp.com/





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