A Look Back: Palette Beginnings

A Look Back: Palette Beginnings

The Personalized Peripheral

Product | 2 min read

, Updated

In the continually evolving world of technology, innovation often stems from unexpected sources. For Palette the journey commenced during the tenure of its founder and CEO, Calvin Chu, at the University of Waterloo, where a frustration with traditional hardware interfaces and a passion for design collided.

Genesis of an Idea:

The idea for Palette came during the company’s early days, where research into various hardware interfaces coincided with a moment of revelation. Frustrated by the cumbersome process of retouching photos using a keyboard and mouse after a trip to Sweden, combined with insights from his DJ friend, Calvin realized the disconnect between existing interfaces and the diverse needs of users. This realization sparked the idea for a new form of interaction – the "personalized peripheral" – tailored to fit the unique workflows of individuals.

From Concept to Creation:

Equipped with a background in mechatronics engineering and product development experience from companies like Apple and Toyota, the team behind Palette embarked on the journey to bring its vision to life. Delving into extensive prototyping and testing, they recognized that every user had different needs for their "perfect tool." Thus, Palette's modular technology was born, offering unparalleled flexibility and customization options. Through eight product generations, the engineering team tackled technical challenges to ensure a seamless user experience, culminating in the development of a magnetic connection system and intuitive software layer.

Expanding Horizons:

Following its Kickstarter launch in 2013, Palette initially focused on catering to photography and creative professionals, but its potential applications swiftly broadened. With in-depth integrations with Adobe applications like Photoshop and Lightroom, as well as support for MIDI and keyboard modes, Palette became a versatile tool across various industries. The launch of new features for Adobe Premiere Pro CC at NAB 2016 further solidified Palette's position as a game-changer in the world of creative control.

Continued Innovation and Growth:

Since its inception, Palette has garnered widespread acclaim, winning the top gold at IFA's User Experience Design Awards (UXDA) in 2015 and expanding its reach to over 46 countries. With a mission to revolutionize human-computer interaction, Palette had continued to push the boundaries of possibility, offering creatives a fast, precise, and intuitive editing experience.

Embracing the Future:

As Palette entered a new chapter of growth, rebranding to Monogram Creative Console in 2019, the company's commitment to innovation remains unwavering.

From its humble beginnings as a student project to a global phenomenon, Palette transformed the way creatives interact with technology, unlocking new possibilities and empowering users to unleash their full creative potential.