3-D printing is growing exponentially despite fading consumer interest. This bifurcating statement is provable because entrepreneurs are adopting 3-D printing who see this technology as a part of the future. Small-scale prototype development is leaping into market-scale production. Recent advancements in software that support 3-D printing have made it feasible for entrepreneurs to turn 2-D concepts in 3-D models. It takes significant effort and expertise from the designer to bridge the gap between idea and a finished product. Entrepreneurs have leveraged this technology to advance their businesses.
Here are the four ways entrepreneurs are using 3-D printing:
1) Minimum Viable Product
3-D printing is facilitating the development of the minimum viable product. For self-funded startups, it is tough to bear the development cost not only because it requires highly-skilled design but also the expense of product fruition is too high.
The rate of development of the minimum viable product is faster with 3-D printing. It is helpful for entrepreneurs because it is practical to present a finished product in front of investors rather than an idea. If the entrepreneurs plan to get crowdfunded through online communities, then a physical product has a much higher possibility to garner support with a visual presentation of a real product.
2) Unique Medical Solutions for Healthcare Startups
Healthcare startups are rapidly adopting 3-D printing. It is crucial for the physician or the doctor to know which organ is affected. MRI and CT scan can provide a 2-D format to physicians. 3-D printing can create model organs and tissues as they might appear on the body. The benefits of these models are countless when it comes to planning treatments and especially transplants. By uploading 2-D information into 3-D models, physicians can better evaluate different body composition of different patients in real dimension. This process provides a better understanding of the ailment and assists in diagnosing the patient. As the costs decrease in the future due to adoption, the application of 3-D printing will be common for medical practitioners.
3) Improving the quality of education
Students can benefit from 3-D models. The better presentation of the real-world situation is in front of students, the better they would understand the importance of that information. 3-D printing could drastically improve student’s science project or for the robotics team which usually lacks quality due to low funding. It might provide useful tools to advance students interests.
4) Workflow Planning
With effective model creation, organizations can plan workflow and mitigate wasted time. By applying it to fields such as art and architecture, fast iterations of designs can be created, and potential pitfalls or production errors can be identified. 3-D printing can save a significant amount of time in project completion when used as a predictive tool.