Howell was born and raised in Wokingham, Berkshire and has one younger brother. Before starting his YouTube channel, he worked in retail chains Focus DIY and Asda. After attending The Forest School, Howell went to the University of Manchester in 2010 to study law, but dropped out in order to pursue video blogging, or vlogging, as a profession. He currently lives in London with fellow YouTuber, BBC Radio 1 presenter and best friend Phil Lester.
Howell initially started making YouTube videos because he was a long-time viewer and was encouraged by some friends, including Phil Lester, to upload videos to his own channel.
He is part of the Fantastic Foursome, a group of British YouTubers consisting of himself, Phil Lester (AmazingPhil), Chris Kendall (crabstickz) and PJ Liguori (KickthePj).
In 2010 and 2011, Howell took part in the live, annual 24 hour internet broadcast "Stickaid" which is a fundraiser that encourages viewers to donate to the charity UNICEF.
In 2012, Howell won the YouTube competition "SuperNote" run by Rhett and Link. Howell also currently features in the weekly video series Becoming YouTube created by Benjamin Cook which looks at the different aspects to becoming an internet celebrity. Howell also writes a blog for The Huffington Post in which he writes about the creative process behind making his YouTube videos.
Howell and Lester collaborate on a YouTube channel for My Damn Channel, The Super Amazing Project, in which they investigate paranormal events. As of December 2013, The Super Amazing Project has over 490,000 subscribers. In December 2012, the YouTube show finished its third season of 12 episodes. Episodes of The Super Amazing Project are not weekly anymore, but rather have 'seasonal specials'. The content of these videos have since been incorporated into the 'Internet News' segment of their radio show. Howell announced that as of October 2014 he and Lester would not carry on working on The Super Amazing Project to concentrate on their Radio 1 show.
As of September 11, 2014, his YouTube channel, Daniel Howell, has more than 4 million subscribers and 247 million video views.
The Dan & Phil ShowEdit
In January 2013, Howell and Lester became the presenters of BBC Radio 1's Sunday evening entertainment and request show. They had occasionally worked with the station before, producing videos for the station's YouTube channel for Edinburgh Festival Fringe and presenting two Christmas broadcasts. The show was designed to be interactive with the audience, featuring amateur music videos from listeners, challenges performed on air by the presenters and song requests.
In August 2014, it was announced that the last Dan and Phil show would be broadcast on 24 August, with the duo moving to a different show on Monday nights, featuring other popular video bloggers.