3D Hubs Opens the Kimono on 3D Printer Usage, MakerBot and Ultimaker on Top

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3D Printing Network Shares 3D Printer Usage Across 200 Cities

3D Hubs, the world’s largest network of 3D printers with over 1,100 printing locations across 200 cities, has publicly shared a report of how 3D printing is being used and which 3D printers, materials and colors are most popular.

“3D printing is a disruptive technology that people are beginning to embrace, and given our unique position within the sector, we thought it would be interesting to highlight emerging trends we’ve started to see on the 3D Hubs network,” said Brian Garret, CTO and co-founder of 3D Hubs.

Out of 1,100 printers in the 3D Hubs network, Ultimaker and MakerBot are the brands signed up most. Ultimaker is taking the lead in Europe and MakerBot in the USA. They are mainly used to make prototypes and all kinds of gadgets, such as customized smartphone and camera cases. White is the preferred color, followed by blue, red and green.

3D Hubs Report Printer Model Distribution

Highlights of the 3D Hubs Trend Report

Sourcing from their actual order data, 3D Hubs has given the market insight into actual 3D printing activity. Here are some highlights:

  • 3D printer brands: Ultimaker and MakerBot currently account for a combined 40.4 percent of the more than 1,100 3D printers on the 3D Hubs network, followed by RepRap (11 percent) and Prusa Mendel (7.3 percent) amongst others. MakerBot leads in the United States and Ultimaker leads in Europe.
  • Prototypes: The number one use case is still prototypes, however more and more end products have begun to be printed. Gadgets, phone accessories, gifts, toys and fashion items like jewelry currently make up more than half of the platforms’ print jobs.
  • Colors and materials: Given that desktop printers represent 90 percent of the 3D Hubs network, it is not surprising that plastics like ABS and PLA make up about 80 percent of the 3D printer materials available. Other popular materials include nylon, wood and flexible rubber-like materials. Customers can order these materials in a variety of different colors, however, white is currently the most offered color (15.7 percent), followed by blue (14.5 percent), red (14.1 percent), and green (12.9 percent). More exotic colors are also being offered including gold, silver and glow-in-the-dark colors.

You can quickly browse through the charts in the report below, or read the full 3D Hubs Trend Report at http://www.3dhubs.com/trends.

How 3D Hubs Works

The majority of 3D printer owners use their device less than 10 hours a week, and 3D Hubs harnesses the remaining 95 percent idle time. Printer owners earn money when their 3D printer is not in use, and simultaneously establish social connections within their local 3D maker community.

3D printer owners simply join the Hubs listing in their city to offer 3D printing services in their neighborhood. Each Hub decides how much money it wants to earn, and sets its own start-up price for a 3D print, plus additional fee charges for each cubic centimeter of material used.

3D Hubs printed objects

3D Hubs performs a 3D model repair check using Netfabb cloud software for each order to ensure the uploaded 3D-model is watertight, automatically repairs it if necessary, and once the 3D-model passes inspection, the order is processed and forwarded to the Hub. 3D Hubs adds a 15 percent commission (excluding any applicable taxes) on top of the price entered for each customer quote, processes the order, and collects the payment.

Customers use 3D Hubs to locate 3D printer owners in their neighborhood, and then order and pick up sustainable, locally printed objects in a matter of days instead of weeks – something that sets 3D Hubs apart from centralized 3D printing services.

Based in Amsterdam and founded in April 2013 by two former 3D Systems employees, 3D Hubs is a privately held company backed by Balderton Capital and Rockstart Accelerator.

3D Hubs team

Watch this video to learn more about how 3D Hubs works:

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One Response to 3D Hubs Opens the Kimono on 3D Printer Usage, MakerBot and Ultimaker on Top

  1. […] get a view into the distribution of 3D printers courtesy of 3D Hubs; MakerBot and Ultimaker are top of the […]

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