Written by Clément Moreau, CEO and Co-Founder of Sculpteo, pioneers in online 3D Printing
During the past two decades, manufacturers around the globe have faced increasing difficulties in being able to obtain good quality small series or customized parts which can be easily replicated. Acquiring these kind of products has traditionally been laborious, expensive and usually left to very specialised services that have managed to build success based on a very complex logistic that they manage internally (such as personalized T-shirts websites CafePress and Zazzle).
Sculpteo offers a far easier solution to directly convert digital files into real objects. From Sculpteo’s online interface, clients can select the size and the material of their chosen object in real-time and the price is automatically calculated. Furthermore, Sculpteo offers the computing power and expertise necessary to build a customization engine and create an unparalleled customer experience due to its software.
An online 3D printing service means a service which is available 24hours a day, with prices adjusted according to the best rate and access to the best 3D printing hardware solution (printers) being pooled for the benefits of each company.
With an on-demand manufacturing process, Sculpteo can produce goods from unique, one-off products, through to short series of objects, helping to reduce potential stock issues for companies.
When Sculpteo launched its online 3D Printing service, clients were offered a new way to create objects through the use of digital tools. The sense of excitement surrounding the concept of 3D Printing, coupled with an online interface, leaves no doubt that the majority of people are highly interested by this new possibility, yet relatively few are inspired enough to create designs from scratch. Professional designers have also been reluctant to accept, and possibly rightly so, that designing is only down to the end user. If users are to be persuaded to want to make objects which are made to measure, it is important that the process is as easy and simple as possible.
Sculpteo has launched the world’s first 3D printing mobile app. This app, which is free via the AppStore, integrates the work of professional designers who have conceived designs that can be finalized using end users’ personal data. This new approach to mass customization is leading the world into the new age of industrial design.
With these new tools, designers can imagine a new range of objects: e-objects. These objects are made to measure according to specifications set by end users and depending on what it is destined to be used for. To use the app, end users do not need to have any previous knowledge of computing or 3D printing software. All users have to do is download the app, select the design they wish and add their personal data, ranging from pre-set designs to their own pictures, favorite colour, height, or the number of friends they have on Facebook.
Since it was unveiled at Las Vegas CES 2012, the Sculpteo application has kept on attracting new designers. Today more than 30 professional designers from all over the world have integrated the app, offering a vast selection of e-objects.
The range of materials which can be 3D printed have advanced significantly in recent years. Sculpteo offers customers the opportunity to 3D print in ceramic, plastic, alumide, resin, even silver and their range of material is being updated and expanded all the time.
In addition, Sculpteo has launched the Sculpteo 3D Printing Cloud Engine in a bid to become ‘the PayPal of the 3D printing industry’. This provides online retailers with the opportunity to integrate 3D printing into their own websites in order to offer their customers a bespoke 3D printing service. It also offers designers a new tool for self-edition, with no cost issues, as the product is made on demand. Sculpteo takes care of the whole process from the manufacturing, generated via the online widget which is integrated into partners’ websites, to the final delivery of the goods.
Another key benefit is that factories (3D Printing facilities) tend to be located close to end users. Due to the fact that it is no longer economical to organize the production overseas, this makes the manufacturing process and delivery more environmentally friendly and aids in generating employment within local markets.