Even though 3D printing has become popular over the years, the technology isn’t widespread in the market. When they first materialized, 3D printers were quite expensive. Over the years costs have come down significantly, but there’s a lot more that needs to be done if companies want to put a 3D printer in every home. HP might have figured out how to do just that. CEO Meg Whitman told investors during the company’s annual shareholder meeting conference call that HP is going to make a “big technology announcement” regarding 3D printers in June.
HP executives predict that global sales of 3D printers will surge to $11 billion by 2021, up from just $2.2 billion in 2012. Therefore the company has more than enough reason to invest in the technology, and to ensure that its products can appeal to the mass market. During the meeting, Whitman said that HP has been able to resolve limitations of the materials that are used in the printing process.
The 3D printer market isn’t catered to by major companies like HP. A number of small companies as well as startups are trying to build up consumer interest in 3D printing, apart from selling small scale devices. HP hasn’t given any hints about its commercial 3D printer as yet, so its not known how much it will cost and exactly when it will be released.