The Candid Story
Candid was founded in early 2022 by Sharon He and Kyle Kelly. It started from a simple idea Sharon had before falling asleep—she recalled her time on dating apps and wished she could swipe on profiles with video introductions as opposed still pictures. She shared the idea with Kyle and not long after, the idea became a business. You’ve probably learned that Candid is a social dating app with video profiles and advanced AI to match
people based on common interests values and goals — as opposed to physical attributes. But how did we come up with the factors that determine long-term compatibility? It is actually from a very candid and humble love story. It started with Sharon’s grandparents, who met each other through the 1950s version of dating apps in China—a stack of pictures exchanged by matchmakers.
Her grandfather liked her grandmother’s photo because of her smile, but he wanted to do more than simply writing a letter. At the time, people exchanged letters or communicated through matchmakers before setting up a meeting. Her grandfather was a young and unconventional guy. He got on his bike and decided to meet his future bride in-person. When he arrived, he saw from far away that she was chatting with other girls. He lost the courage to say hi and for the next month, he watched her from far away. Her grandfather was a jack of all trades and knew how to tailor outfits. When he finally
mustered up the courage, he wrote to her and made her an outfit — in that month of “observation,” he figured out her grandmother’s measurements. When her grandmother received the potential suitor’s letter, she was caught off-guard by the outfit that came that fitted her perfectly. She was impressed by his attention to detail and wrote back to him. They were married for 56 years and supported each other through life’s ups and downs. Sharon was raised by her grandparents and through them, she learned what it takes to be life partners.
When she was swiping through stacks of pictures on dating apps, she learned that most apps’ algorithms place emphasis on physical attraction over factors that actually determine long-term compatibility. Most apps are also plagued with fake profiles and they underreport sexual abuses. Coincidentally, Kyle was also experiencing similar frustrations on dating apps. Sharon met Kyle after being on dating apps for 3 years and going on 150 first dates. Together, they created Candid to make online social dating better. We hope you’ve enjoyed the Candid story and will enjoy the Candid experience on our app.