Cuddlr Is Like Tinder, Except Without Sex Before Cuddling

Is this new app a platonic solution for modern loneliness, or even creepier than hooking up with strangers?

Life is rough these days. Jobs are scarce, the price of housing is out of control, the weather is never normal anymore, we're back at war in Iraq and it seems like the world is constantly falling apart. We could all just use a f--king hug, you know?

An app released yesterday for iPhone users, Cuddlr, is promising the hug without the f--king. "Find people near you who are up for a cuddle," its site explains. "Have a cuddle with them. No pressure." Here's a video all about it:

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Created by three guys (the only three guys?) who love snuggling, Cuddlr is all about offering users "a welcome break from hookup culture, while still making it easy to meet people near you and establish a physical connection."

It works basically like Tinder, minus the boning: You ask a stranger if they're down to get together, and -- if they agree -- the app gives you walking directions to their location for a "cuddle in public or in private." Afterward, you rate your partner with "a thumbs-up if everything went ok, or in the event of a somewhat too-grabby cuddle, you can report the user...we ban anyone who is consistently using it improperly."



Another major difference from dating apps: Cuddlr users can't filter partners by gender or age. "We encourage you to consider cuddling with people who you wouldn't date, sleep with, or even find attractive," the site explains. "Hooking up is certainly not always a bad thing, but there's definitely an under-explored time and a place for a more gentle, no-pressure intimacy, and that's what Cuddlr aims to help with."

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Still, the app is only available to download if you're over the age of 17, and the App Store warnings include "Frequent/Intense Mature/Suggestive Themes," "Infrequent/Mild Sexual Content and Nudity" and "Infrequent/Mild Alcohol, Tobacco, or Drug Use or References." Cuddlr's co-founder, Charlie Williams, isn't naive and predicts that some snuggle buddies will want to get even more physical with each other.

"[W]ait until the end of the cuddle, ask nicely, and be prepared to take either 'yes' or 'no' as an answer...don’t try to 'change gears' midway through," Williams advised Cuddlr users in an interview with Salon. "And certainly don’t use this app to pick people up. Sex is a great thing too, but there are other apps for that."

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