50 Most Admired Companies of the Year 2021
The Silicon Review
“We currently offer a premium subscription to its users. This subscription service allows them to access premium art content from our partner artists, galleries, and museums along with many other advanced device features.”
Hanging a painting on your wall will never go out of style, but sometimes, you want to display art or photograph with a digital screen so the colors and subject stand out. That is where a new segment called digital art canvas works its magic, displaying an endless stream of art or photographs on a digital screen that makes each image look uncannily close to a printed photograph or realistic art. Digital art frames are dynamic, too: you can change images once you are tired of a particular one, and you can even set the frame to rotate between multiple images. Digital art frames are a beautiful and modern alternative to physically printed art. Digital art canvas or digital art frame or digital art display is a new segment where the digital screen is tied to a connected content(fine Art, NFT and photography) library, so users can enjoy the art on the digital screen.
Palacio is one such innovative company that offers art lovers an authentic viewing experience with its state-of-the-art Canvia digital art frames. Canvia is driven by Palacio’s proprietary & patented ArtSense technology that simulates the behavior of a physical painting or high-quality print on a digital screen, whatever the environment. Controlled via an intuitive app, web account, or voice-enabled devices, Canvia makes it easy to find art to suit changing tastes, keep you inspired and enliven your surroundings. It uses proprietary image processing and built-in sensors which adapt curated art to your room’s ambient visual conditions and decor.
Palacio competes with big names like Netgear, Samsung, and other very small players who cater to only the local market.
Rahul Ranjan, Founder of Palacio, Spoke Exclusively to The Silicon Review. Below is an Excerpt
Q. Tell us what inspired the creation of Palacio.
Since my early days, I have always been fascinated by art. I deeply appreciated both the creative imagination needed and the equally difficult task of carving it out on a canvas. While leading companies such as Intel and Qualcomm, I developed deep domain experience in the fields of IoT, connected devices, and electronics. Most of the innovations in the industry were around connected devices in three verticals—Smart Home, Wearables, and Smart Industry. It was obvious that neither creativity nor art was among the focus areas. However, I kept interacting with artists, collectors, and common users to find out if a technical disruption in the art experience could propel growth in the entire art/creativity market. The answer was "Yes". With that vision, I started Palacio in early 2017 with a mission to innovate in art and technology and bring fine art, photography, and NFTs to every space.
Q. What makes Palacio great? What can you tell us about affordability, local styling, transparency, and quality? And how do these promises help the company grow?
We provide vertically integrated art experience services for consumer residences, as well as enterprises such as offices, hotels, etc. Our customers buy Canvia digital art canvases that are connected via wifi to the Canvia art platform. Canvia is powered by patented ArtSense technology to help showcase realistic reproductions of the thousands of artworks on the Canvia Art platform, from old classics to contemporary artworks & fine photography and, most recently, NFTs directly from users' crypto wallets.
Q. 'Our concepts revolve around meeting niche needs, offering top-notch quality and good value for money.' Would you like to elaborate on this a bit more?
Canvia is democratizing art through both innovation and content partnerships. Our offering is a great way to experience high-quality art without investing in expensive artworks. Our patented Artsense technology provides unmatched realism in the reproduction of artworks on the Canvia art canvas. Our customers can buy Canvia’s affordable digital canvas and browse a wide array of artists and artworks before making a major art purchase.
Q. What strategies are in place to encourage innovation in your company?
We take a two-pronged strategy to be one of the most innovative companies in the art & tech space. First, we actively listen to our customers and users for new needs. Second, our R&D team examines new use cases and uses the findings to drive the creation of technically innovative solutions. Our weekly meeting on the topic of new use cases is the most admired aspect within the company. Each person is able to bring new ideas for discussion and addition to our roadmap.
Q. In what industries are your clients? Can you provide us with one or two success stories describing the challenges your clients faced and how your solutions helped them overcome those challenges?
We cater to several segments however focus only on three main industries: direct consumer, hotels, and offices.
We have a ton of success stories, but there are a couple that immediately comes to mind when I think about the impact of our product. First, we assisted a senior living facility that wanted to display artwork on five different Canvias at the entrance but manage the images from a remote location. After they explained their needs, we provided a multi-device management tool to help them manage the art content remotely. This allowed them to cater to a wide range of residents and change artworks remotely.
Another success story that comes to mind involved an actual art school. The school was interested in educating its students on the different types of art styles and genres. They were looking for two key features. One, the ability to exhibit details about the specific artwork on the screen during display. Two, the ability to see fine details such as brush strokes, texture, etc. We worked with the school to develop the tools necessary to add details for each of the selected artworks and the ability to display those when required. We also provided a zoom function that allowed the staff to zoom in on the artwork and reveal the minutest details.
Q. Will Palacio be expanding, bringing on any new services that we should be aware of?
Canvia currently offers a premium subscription to its users. This subscription service allows them to access premium content from our partner artists and galleries and many other advanced device features. We are working on exclusive premium tier content services for our selected collectors so they can enjoy curated artworks (from premium galleries and artists) of their choice. This new service will be available by invitation only.
Q. Where do you stand as a company in the current market landscape? And what are you doing to stay ahead of the curve?
Art & tech is a nascent but vibrant market. In this segment, there are some big players as well as startups, and there is room for everyone to distinguish their own offerings via differentiated content or product features. More than looking at the competition, we listen to the needs of our art-loving community. We have been able to use our strength in technology to solve several problems the art market has faced for a long time apart from enabling exciting new use cases around NFTs. While our tech team has developed several IP-protected technologies, our content partnership team has always been able to bring exciting new content catering to the needs of our fast-growing Canvia user base.
Q. What plans for transformation are you pursuing to remain relevant now and in the future?
Our mission is to bring fine art, photography, and NFTs to every space. To accomplish this mission, we have to continue focusing on developing patented image and video processing technologies to guarantee the best-in-class art visualization experience. At the same time, many user-interface-related innovations can help us bridge the gap between content and device. In the future, we plan to work with premium art galleries and artists to help them find appropriate collectors using integrated market models.
The Creative Leader Upfront
Rahul Ranjan is the Founder of Palacio. He brings over eighteen years of experience in the connected devices/platform/telecom/media industry and has worked with companies such as Intel, Qualcomm, and TP-LINK. At Qualcomm, he held multiple leadership positions, including managing Qualcomm-Atheros strategy & planning, leading Qualcomm IoT BU strategy/ecosystem development, and starting an automotive business using connectivity products. Most recently, Rahul was leading Product Management & Partnerships for the TP-LINK smart home unit.
Mr. Ranjan holds an MBA from UVA-Darden Business School, an MS from Wayne State University, and a BS from IIT Kharagpur.