Despite all the hype around personal desktop 3D printers, consumers never warmed to the idea of machines only really useful for making toys—most kids already have more than enough plastic figurines lying around for their parents to step on.
Rather than fuelling a movement of makers and tinkerers, the technology will have its biggest impact in enterprise manufacturing. But don’t look for assembly lines to be replaced by building-sized 3D printers that spit out finished products any time soon. Instead, the technology will enable two value-creating steps in the manufacturing process: rapid prototyping and mass-customization. Continue reading “Beyond the 3D printing hype: Transformative prototyping & customizing mass-produced goods”