2017 has been an exciting year for the 3D printing industry, with plenty of new players appearing on the scene, as well as countless new collaborations and innovations. In such a dynamic industry, we would love to be able to simply peer into a crystal ball to see what the future will bring. Unfortunately, we don’t have a crystal ball at Materialise, but we do have many industry experts and visionaries and we’ve asked them to share their predictions for the 3D printing industry in 2018. We’ve bundled their input for you in a list of five trends we anticipate for 2018.
Far from its days as a niche technology, 3D Printing now accounts for more than 90% of the world’s in-ear hearing aids: and that’s just one example of how 3D Printing is making waves in the manufacturing sector across diverse industries. At Materialise, we’ve announced five major eyewear manufacturing projects in the past year alone, in addition to several 3D-printed fashion collaborations and other consumer products.
In 1988, a young engineer named Fried Vancraen visited a research facility in Bremen Germany, and while there, saw one of the first 3D printers up and running in Europe. For the entire drive back to Leuven, his mind was racing with the applications that could one day be made possible by what this early-stage technology had to offer. Just one year later, Fried did an FFF funding round (friends, fools and family), purchased his very own 3D printer, and opened a small prototyping company called Materialise.
What do the videocassette recorder, compact disc player, high-definition television and blu-ray disc all have in common? They are all products that have become household items after their debut at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES for short).
The results are in from the runners featured in last week’s blog post. The team we sponsored at the Zurich Marathon fundraising for non-profit Hear the World Foundation finished with a time of 3 hours and 43 minutes. Way to go, team!
This Sunday at the Zurich Marathon, Markus Leuthold, Martin Kirchberger, Siddhartha Jha and Jane Bevan, employees of the hearing aid manufacturer Phonak, will run a sum distance of 42.2km as a fundraiser for the Hear the World Foundation.