TresdPro, a Spanish start-up has partnered with AstroPrint to enter the 3D printing arena with the launch of its dual-extruder 3D Printer, the R1. A smart and reliable 3D printer for professionals.
Last weekend, we walked around the NY MakerFaire and had the pleasure to see the first AstroPrint powered 3D printer that appears in public. Yay!
Our friends at IMADE3D showed a prototype of their new JellyBox printer running AstroPrint software. This colorful printer allows students to learn about 3D printing by building their own printer. Unlike most DIY 3D printers, this one is actually easy and fun to build.
One of the challenges after students build the printer is to get them excited about printing things. Until now, engineering grade software and horrible user interfaces haven’t helped with this. People can get discouraged by non-intuitive UIs, lack of networking capabilities and the time-consuming process of going from CAD file to physical object.
This is where AstroPrint comes to help💪. Students can now print files right from the touchscreen, controlling and monitoring remotely and much more. Basically, they now fall in love when they build the printer, and when they use it 😍😍
We’ll be announcing more partnerships over the next few weeks. Stay tuned!
If phone and computer manufacturers can make software upgrades over-the-air, why 3D printer manufacturers can’t?
From AstroPrint OEM dashboard you can now control all software aspects of your 3D printer line, getting three main benefits from it:
1. Better Quality Prints
For most 3D printers today, users have to tinker until they find the proper slicer settings. Or, they have to download recommended slicer settings to make their own printer profiles. AstroPrint has solved this issue, allowing manufacturers control their slicer settings in a centralized way.
Many 3D printer manufacturers are preinstalling AstroPrint software in their printers. Just like Lenovo preinstalls Windows in computers, or Samsung preinstalls Android in phones.
Our goal at AstroPrint is to help manufacturers make smart 3D printers, replacing their antiquated software. But each printer is different and as a manufacturer, you want software tailored for your printers. This is why we are giving you more and more flexibility to customize Astrobox software to meet the specific needs of your Hardware:
Can you imagine accessing millions of 3D printable models right from your printer controller?
Stop dreaming…that’s now possible. In our fight against software mediocrity, we have integrated the most popular model repository websites in our touchscreen controller, as user-friendly apps!
The Mod-t, a beautiful, cloud-connected and easy-to-use 3D printer for only $299. NewMatter recently announced it will shut down operations. What went wrong?
Some 3D printer manufacturers are making their own user-friendly software innovations to make printers more approachable. However, they don’t sell enough units. But why? Don’t people like easy-to-use 3D printers with a sleek design?
Have you heard of Pirate3D‘s Buccaneer 3D Printer?
It’s the Jony Ives-inspired 3D printer that never took sail.
With a sleek, aluminum body, smooth, crystal clear acrylic housing, and beautiful aesthetics, it’s all beauty and no brains.
If you aren’t in the loop, Pirate3D raised a (then) record-breaking $1.4M+ on Kickstarter for their Buccaneer 3D Printer in 2013.
It was a hit.
Largely because most consumers had never seen such a well thought out 3D printer at such an affordable price point.
At the time, the most well-known printer was Makerbot’s Replicator 2, which ran for $2,200 and Pirate3D claimed to have a better designed, faster printer (The Buccaneer) for just $347.
Truth is: it WAS a well-designed printer and we were just as excited for Pirate3D to pull this off.
Many companies are trying to sell 3d printers as the future of technology… with a blue LCD screen from the 80’s. Today, 3D printers are the only piece of technology that comes with such an antiquated user interface. But, do we really think that 3D printers can go mainstream while they come with the old monochrome display?
It is clear by now that cables and SD cards are not the future of 3D printing. As more users demand their printers to be wireless, 3D printer manufacturers are increasingly making wifi-connectivity a priority for their printer line. However, many of them are simply connecting a desktop 3D printer to a local network and that, is not the future.
A step further is to connect printers to a cloud platform. We live in the era of the internet of things, where every device gets connected to the cloud. However, most 3D printer manufacturers don’t really understand what the cloud does for a 3D printer. What are the advantages of cloud versus local network for 3D printers? Do 3D printers gain value when they are cloud-connected?
The next few years are going to be exciting. Desktop 3D printers are going to be in everyone’s home and 3D printer manufacturers will sell units like candies at a kindergarten school. Right?
While I’m extremely positive about the future of Desktop 3D printers, the industry needs to first jump the “chasm” that separates the hobbyists and the early majority. Within the next 5 years, manufacturers that don’t make significant changes in their current strategy will miss on the next wave of customers.
What’s stopping desktop 3D printers from mass adoption?
So far, manufacturers have mostly focused on hardware, while software has been left behind. For this reason, we have seen a lot of hardware improvements. Printers are now faster and more reliable. They are also cheap, the Monoprice Mini is a good example of a printer that anyone can afford. Some printers are now beautiful to look at. Our friends at Kodama are putting together an affordable printer that almost looks like an iPhone. I can picture the new Obsidian looking great in anyone’s living room.
If Hardware has improved so much, then why we continue to sell to the hobbyists and not mainstream? The reason is: software has fallen behind.