Kang Daniel topped the second season of the Mnet idol competition Produce 101 in 2017 and became a member of its derivative boy group Wanna One. They debuted in August 2017 with the extended play 1×1=1 (To Be One). In November of that year, they released the mini album’s repackaged version called 1-1=0 (Nothing Without You). The combined sales of their first two albums exceeded one million. In October 2018, the group released their first studio album called 1¹¹=1 (Power of Destiny). In 2019, Kang Daniel established the talent agency Konnect Entertainment to manage his solo career. That same year, he dropped his solo debut extended play Color on Me, which topped the Gaon Album Chart. In 2022, he expanded into acting through a leading role in the Disney+ Star original series Rookie Cops.

Kang Daniel is an only child. He revealed that he decided to legally change his name to Daniel because people were having difficulty pronouncing his birth name.