3-D Printing Sweeping Toy Industry Off the Shelves
Cheap, plastic toys—no manufacturer necessary. The 2020 toy and game market is projected to be $135 billion, and 3-D printing brings those profits home.
People have scoffed that 3-D printers are simply toys themselves. But they probably didn't realize how much money is made off playthings. Do-it-yourself (DIY) manufacturing—making goods at home with a 3-D printer using open source designs from a free online repository—has a multimillion-dollar impact on the overall toy industry.
A team of engineers from Michigan Tech and the London-based company MyMiniFactory published their results on the topic in Technologies last week.
The research team, led by Joshua Pearce (MSE/ECE), focused on how much a desktop 3-D printer could save consumers.
"The 3-D printing industry is now dominated by small, low-cost printers and as the industry grows we're going to see a lot more DIY manufacturing," Pearce says. "The evidence is just overwhelming that this makes sense from a consumers' perspective." Read the full story.