Expect Greater Consumer Adoption of 3D Printing
CEA predicts the consumer side of 3D printing will only grow as the costs drop, noting that a number of affordable systems and services have already surfaced.
New York-based Shapeways (Shapeways.com), for example, offers a way for consumers to print their designs and share their creations. The community now has 160,000 members and more than 6,000 shops that have printed more than a million products, from cell phone cases to eyeglass frames. The biggest obstacles to mainstream adoption are affordability and creation tools, but those barriers continue to be removed, paving the way for more widespread use, the panelists said.
"Once 3D printing becomes more widespread, why can't people sell their designs, especially when it becomes more consumer driven?" Dubravac asked.