Amazon Launches 3D Printing Storefront
The marketplace for entrepreneurs making 3-D printed goods just got a whole lot bigger!
This week Amazon pushed even further into the 3D printing industry by launching an online storefront for 3D printed objects. You will now have the option to download design files and print these on household machines.
The storefront is a pilot program in partnership with with four companies that offer 3D printing as a service, most notably 3DLT, a storefront that partners with designers to sell 3D-printable files. The company also sell finished 3D-printed objects, you can pick up things like an iPhone case, a belt buckle, or a bracelet, but the customers will have to buy the file first.
The Amazon.com platform for 3-D printed goods is “appealing to independent designers who’ve told us they want access to a large consumer market,” Colin Klayer of 3-D printing service 3DLT said in a statement.
Amazon’s new storefront puts it in competition with several other already-established 3D printing online stores, most notably Shapeways, 3DSystems’ Cubify and the Makerbot Digital Store. These stores are ideal for people who have a 3D printer but don’t want to create their own design files. After all, it’s much easier to purchase an .STL (the most-common file for 3D printers) for a necklace than to spend hours in a program like Cubify Sculpt designing it yourself. People who don’t own a 3D printer, or don’t own one that can print in the material they desire, can also order customized prints from these websites.