Is Hoop App Safe for Kids? - A Parental Guide

Reshmita Das | May 15, 2024

Is Hoop App safe for kids?

What Is the Hoop App? 

Hoop App was launched in November 2019 by 26-year-old co-founders Lucas Gervais and Alexi Pourret. It is a social networking app available on iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and  Android devices. 

Hoop is integrated with Snapchat and allows users to connect with Snapchatters worldwide, opening up a whole new realm of possibilities for making friends and building relationships. With its user-friendly interface and intuitive swipe system reminiscent of popular dating apps, Hoop makes it easy for anyone from anywhere to browse through profiles, view photos, and connect with like-minded individuals in their Snapchat community.

In just a few years since its launch, the Hoop App has skyrocketed in popularity, garnering over 10 million downloads on the Play Store alone.

How Does Hoop Work? 

Here's a breakdown of how the Hoop App works:

1. Download and Sign Up: First, users need to download the Hoop app from the App Store or Google Play. Then, they sign up using their Google Email account and fill in their name, age, gender, and location. They also need to add a profile picture.

The biggest red flag of Hoop is that there is no age verification process. Users can sign up with any age. Though there appears to be a warning that they will terminate the account if they find users lying about their age, the measure is unreliable because there's no sure way for them to check if users are sharing the truth. Some people may not be honest about their age when they sign up. 

Hoop App Dangers


2.Sharing Social Details: To start making friends, users need to share their TikTok or Snapchat username. 

Hoop App Integrated with Snapchat


3. Finding Friends: Hoop shows users profiles of people who might be a good match based on their preferences. Users can go from profile to profile by clicking on X if they don't like their profile and snap icon if they would like to send a friend request. 

4. Using Diamonds: Diamonds are like a special currency in Hoop. Users use them to send friend requests and super requests, which make them more visible to others. Users also need diamonds to customize their profile and see previous matches.

Hoop App In App Purchase

5. Accepting Requests: When someone sends users a friend request, they can choose to accept it or decline it. If users accept, they can share their Snapchat details to start chatting.

6. No Chat in Hoop: Unlike other dating/meeting apps, Hoop doesn't have a chat feature. Its main purpose is to connect users with people on Snapchat outside their friend's circle. But once users get connected via Snapchat, conversations can take off.

Is Hoop a Dating App?

For sure, it's a yes! Hoop is often called the "Tinder for Snapchat" or "Tinder for teens."  Most dating apps like Tinder are only for adults who are 18 or older, so Hoop is a popular choice for teens who want to make more than new friends. Just like any dating site, Hoop connects and matches complete strangers based on individual preferences. Users can swipe through other user profiles, see their pictures, name, and location, like or dislike someone, and hit a connection.

How old do you have to be to use Hoop?

The Hoop App says kids as young as 13 can use it, the App Store says 12+, and the Google Play Store says it's for teens. The Hoop App relies on users to insert their real age. Users can easily lie as there is no age verification process. They also mention users 13 to 17 years old are not allowed to use Hoop without parental permission, but these rules can be easily bypassed.

Our recommendation is 17+. We say so because the app is very much similar to any dating app and kids can stumble upon inappropriate content when strangers message them via snapchat.

Protect Kids from online dating apps

Safety Concerns of Hoop App

We analyzed the app and found the following warning signal that can cause concerns for parents while their children are using Hoop.

  1. Online Predators: We do not know the real identity and intention of the person on the other side of the screen. Online predators can pose to be of less age and provide false information about themselves to lure children into their trap. A child may face Grooming, sextortion, cyberbullying and even worse, they can put their life in danger if they come across and befriend online predators that are so prevalent on the internet.

  2. Inappropriate Content: As we scrolled through the app, we found images of people posing in the streets, at home, or outside, but then there were a few people posing in their thongs and briefs. A guy even had blood oozing out of his nose. Besides the photos, the bios of users can give hints inviting users for sex. Once your child accepts the Hoop friend requests and their snap details, chances are they might get exposed to inappropriate images, videos and messages.

  3. No Parental Controls: The Hoop App does not have any built-in parental controls. However, it does have a parental guideline document that parents can follow to keep their child safe while using the App. While this is all general information, parents will have little or almost no control over what their child is doing on the App.

  4. In-App Purchases: The Hoop App has a very meticulous monetization strategy. You need diamonds, i.e., their app currency, to connect with other users. Users can either buy them with real money or earn them by viewing video ads, logging in to the app every day, participating in challenges, and inviting friends to Hoop. Children can get hooked and obsessed and, if not checked, end up spending time and money on the app.

Hoop In App Currency Diamonds 

App Danger Project determines whether an app is safe for a child by using machine language to analyze reviews about the app from the Play Store and App Store. They stated that the Hoop App is unsafe for children after finding reviews that complaints of sexual exploitation of minors.

Hoop App Review by Parents

Source: Common Sense Media

How can parents keep their children safe from Hoop App?

Have open conversations: There's no better way to foster a strong parent-child relationship and ensure your child's digital safety than by having open conversations. Discuss their day-to-day online experiences, get to know their online friends, interests, and thoughts. Take your time to respond if you dislike what they are up to online. Let them know you love them and care about them deeply. Whatever the circumstances , they can always come to you and be honest. Remember, when children have unmet physical and emotional needs at home, they start looking them elsewhere.

Set boundaries and discuss appropriate behavior: Building healthy digital habits requires a collaborative approach. Make sure your child knows you and your child are on the same team, and you are working towards keeping them safe. Write and stick the do's and don'ts of social media use in their rooms.

  • What are the criteria for them to add friends?
  • In which devices and places can they use social media, and how long?
  • What do they do if they suspect something unusual?

Talking specifically about Hoop App, get to know from your child if they know about the Hoop App. Tell them clearly the dangers and why they shouldn't use it. 

Utilize Parental Control Apps like Mobicip: One of the most effective ways to protect your child online is by using a parental control app. Since the Hoop App does not have built-in parental control features, you can use Mobicip to safeguard your child from its potential dangers. Mobicip is a comprehensive parental control app that allows you to manage and monitor your child's online activities.

With Mobicip, you can block Hoop App, receive instant alerts if they attempt to download them and pause their device usage if necessary. Similar to Hoop, there are numerous apps on the internet that can pose risks to your child. However, with Mobicip, you can have full control over which apps and websites your child can access.

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