Print 11 comment(s) - last by ammaross.. on Jul 29 at 12:57 PM

Customers can create their own items for as low as about $30 USD

Once thought to be much too expensive for home use, 3D printing is now becoming more of a household practice -- and Amazon is looking to help everyone become a product designer.

According to a recent press release, Amazon has launched the 3D Printed Products store, which is a marketplace for all things 3D printing. It gives customers access to over 200 different print on-demand products, 3D printing books/guides, software and even 3D printers. 

This is how it works: customers can select from easy-to-use design templates, put their individual spin on the item, and use a 3D preview feature to see a 360 degree, virtual model of the product. 
From there, the item is 3D printed on-demand by a manufacturing provider and shipped directly to the customer.
Many of the print on-demand products can be customized by material, size, styles and color variations, and further personalized with image and text imprints. 

“The introduction of our 3D Printed Products store suggests the beginnings of a shift in online retail - that manufacturing can be more nimble to provide an immersive customer experience. Sellers, in alignment with designers and manufacturers, can offer more dynamic inventory for customers to personalize and truly make their own,” said Petra Schindler-Carter, Director for Amazon Marketplace Sales.

“The 3D Printed Products store allows us to help sellers, designers and manufacturers reach millions of customers while providing a fun and creative customer experience to personalize a potentially infinite number of products at great prices across many product categories.”

Amazon's 3D printing store includes smaller items like cufflinks, bobble head figurines and wine glass holders for under $40 USD. For around $100 USD, customers can design items like pendants, earrings and necklaces.

Amazon may have a great idea here, especially since a study from the Michigan Technological University last year said that using 3D printers for household products could save hundreds of dollars versus store-bought products. More specifically, the study found that the average American household would spend anywhere between $312 and $1,944 USD for 20 chosen household products online as opposed to just $18 USD if they made them with the 3D printer. 

You can check out the new store here

Source: Amazon

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Gimmick with a capital G
By Nortel on 7/28/2014 1:36:49 PM , Rating: 3
cufflinks, bobble head figurines and wine glass holders... pendants, earrings and necklaces.

Costume jewelry, wine glass holders, etc...? I can't even roll my eyes enough at this story. 99% of these products can be produced through injection molding at a fraction of the cost. The only interesting aspect is the customization, which seems to be a 'paint by numbers' implementation.

It is sad when you own a professional "Full Color 3D Printing Machine" and all you can think of to sell is bobble heads and random trinkets.

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By Schrag4 on 7/28/2014 1:52:42 PM , Rating: 3
My first thought was that if Amazon lets its customers submit whatever they want to be printed, they'd have to be very careful about what they print. The last thing they need is the ATF rolling in hot after they ship a few AR15 lower receivers - even though they'd be total junk that you couldn't pay me to use, at least with the current material.

The alternative is to limit users to useless trinkets that nobody would ever want, which makes me wonder why they would even consider offering it in the first place. Maybe this whole thing is just an experiment that's not intended to bring in a dime.

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By Flunk on 7/28/2014 2:19:13 PM , Rating: 3
Remember that this is gen 1 of the technology, if it works out it will just be a matter of time until they're rolling out more items and possibly even the ability to add your own items (likely after a screening process).

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By Reclaimer77 on 7/28/2014 2:28:59 PM , Rating: 3
A few years ago my girlfriend's teenage daughter was obsessed with these rubber bands shaped like animals you wear on your wrist. I thought it was pretty stupid.

Turns out it was a nation-wide fad and a multi-billion dollar business.

Are these stupid? Yeah probably. But you can bet your ass if it catches on, everyone else is going to look stupid when Amazon starts raking in the cheddah.

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By Reclaimer77 on 7/28/2014 2:35:08 PM , Rating: 3

These fucking things.

Some guy is sipping mojito's and getting blown by $5k a night hookers for the rest of his life because he took something so mind blowing stupid, childish, and simple and made a fortune from it.

The moral of the story is...I don't know. I now want a Mojito.

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By Nortel on 7/28/2014 4:08:38 PM , Rating: 2
The joke always was, once you are wearing one you can't tell what the original shape was... it just looks like a squiggly mess of colors.

Additionally, those bands were literally odd shaped colored rubber o-rings.

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By Lord 666 on 7/28/2014 7:21:44 PM , Rating: 3
Did you troll your girlfriends daughter by asking her why she likes stupid things or did you buy the bands by the box for her?

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By M'n'M on 7/28/2014 8:21:41 PM , Rating: 2
The moral of the story is...I don't know. I now want a Mojito.

Can't afford the 5k ? :)

Anyone remember the pet rock ?
From wiki ...
In April 1975, Dahl was in a bar (which is now Beauregard Vineyards Tasting room in Bonny Doon) listening to his friends complain about their pets. This gave him the idea for the perfect "pet"; a rock. A rock would not need to be fed, walked, bathed, groomed and would not die, become sick, or be disobedient. He said they were to be the perfect pets, and joked about it with his friends. However, he eventually took the idea seriously, and drafted an "instruction manual" for a pet rock. It was full of puns, gags and plays on words that referred to the rock as an actual pet. The original had no eyes.

Dahl made over $1M in the 6 months the fad lasted.

RE: Gimmick with a capital G
By marvdmartian on 7/29/2014 8:20:05 AM , Rating: 3
3D movies are, for the most part, nothing but a gimmick...but look at how well they've sold the 3D technology, in TV's and Blu Ray players.

I have some of the large, professional machines at work, that we use for modeling. If I gave the co-worker that runs the machine a 3D drawing of something I wanted built, I have no doubt he'd fit it onto a build sheet, with some other project. ;)

By KC7SWH on 7/28/2014 1:14:06 PM , Rating: 2
At about $30.00 per item I'll stick to Shapeways thank you very much.

By ammaross on 7/29/2014 12:57:28 PM , Rating: 2
"More specifically, the study found that the average American household would spend anywhere between $312 and $1,944 USD for 20 chosen household products online as opposed to just $18 USD if they made them with the 3D printer."

And yet, the cheap items are $30/per.... I don't see the cost savings, as 12 items at $30/per is still $360 at the least, which is over that $312 minimum of the "study."

"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay

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