Solace launches Kickstarter for gender identity and expression self-discovery app Clarity

Clarity app Solace

Clarity is the third app launched by Solace, and is designed to help users gain greater insight into their gender identity, gender expression, and sexuality.

If the company reaches its ‘all or nothing’ goal on Kickstarter by October 15, it plans to make Clarity available on iOS and Android. It has a modest goal of $4,500, which is approximately one-third pledged at the time of writing.

Co-founder, Patrick McHugh, believes in using technology to give people better tools and more agency over their own process of self-discovery.

He told SEXTECHGUIDE about the need for such an app as there is such a lack of positive resources for the community. The ones that do exist “are childish and overly simplistic at best, and outdated and actively harmful at worst,” McHugh believes.

Clarity app’s key features

The ‘Marquee’ feature is a guided experience that encourages the user to separate out their gender identity (who they are at heart), gender expression (how they want to be perceived by others), and sexual orientation (who they want to love and be loved by).

Designed to provide guidance and explanation on each facet, it uses a set of sliders to indicate where the user feels aligned. The experience ends with an overview and analysis of the inputs, offering greater insight into a personal experience of what identity, expression, and orientation might mean for them.

The second feature in Clarity is the use of graphs to display your responses. Essentially, the more it’s used, the more accurate its visual insights become. The app goes beyond a fixed snapshot of someone’s experience and allows the user to observe past responses and see fluctuations in each category over a period of time.

How it differs from the other companion apps

While there is the common thread in the Solace apps – each using technology to improve conditions for the LGBT community – the apps are distinguishable by mission and functionality. Clarity’s intended user, however, is wider than solely the transgender community, and McHugh says this is why it made the most sense to keep it as a distinct user experience from its previous apps, Solace and Bliss.

While Solace specifically assists using access to information, and Bliss helps with financial resources, both focus on goal-setting, and accomplishing specific tasks related to moving forward in gender transition.

Clarity creates a platform for access to tools in breaking down and tracking aspects of their identity. It’s designed to help users understand where they’re currently at, where they’ve come from, and where they want to be.

McHugh explains that even though the apps are distinct from each other, the News Stream feature in Solace began as a standalone app, called Respite. Solace eventually decided to integrate the two, “so we’re definitely cognizant of that possibility for Clarity down the road.”

All or nothing?

Kickstarter felt like “a really natural fit for our funding goals and our vision of how to get backers involved,” says McHugh.

However, as this is an all-or-nothing model for crowdfunding, this means that if it doesn’t achieve its goal, nobody’s credit card will be charged.

“That felt like the best way for us to be good stewards of the resources that our community is entrusting us with.”

Read Next: Transcapsule is an app that uses photos and video to create your transition tracking story

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Oli Lipski
Oli Lipski

Oli is a freelance sex tech researcher based in London. With an MA in Sexual Dissidence, researching sex tech, and a BA in History, researching gender and sexuality, she has a keen understanding of the past, present and future of sex. In addition to SEXTECHGUIDE, you can find Oli's work on titles such as shado-mag, QueerMajority, UnicornZine and more.

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