If you take the apprach, described in Point 1, you might have never seen something like Tinder.
There is no prior art to its design as far as I know. Same with Snapchat.
But traditionally, creating marginal improvements on the current designs is the norm with big companies since they cannot actually mock up something from the scratch and push it into the market becasue they are bounded by their current design which actually serves as their identity. Look at Microsoft, they cant really come out of their tile based appraoch. Samsung, Apple respectively.
So the guys who have a lot of money to spend on, cannot break out with new ways of doing the same thing. They change things slowly, in anevolutionary manner.
I dont see how you can create a distinction between the two appraoches. Infact, in my experience if you build on top of an existing solution, at a later point of time, you feel suffocated. Which is primarily because you did not take a novel appraoch, perhaps.
Further, in regarrds to the email example in the article, there is a calssical tradeoff between providing a customizable experience and a highly intutive experience (which heavily cuts down on the things you can do at one screen). So it really depends upon what you are used to. If you open Snapchat, you might end up feleing the same.