We’re all definitely moving toward a whole new level of customization. Who wants to send a postcard greeting when you can easily make one on your iOS or Android device, and have it sent via postal mail? Want to design your own T-shirt? Just launch your iPhone! You can customize all sorts of thing, from cups and coasters to phone cases and wall art, all from your phone.
But all that is prelude to the big cheese of customization — 3D-printed items. I was fascinated by 3D printers at CES, and seeing one up close at Fashion Week only stoked the fire. The whole idea of personal manufacturing is just so genuinely cool and future-forward. Want a bracelet? A bust? A little model of a car that doesn’t yet exist? No problemo. Just print out your own physical 3D objects, all without having to buy one of these printers.
It was only a matter of time before the idea expanded to apps, and Sculpteo‘s new iPhone application gives users a taste of the action. Just take a snap of your face (or that of your friend, your kid, your dog, etc) and choose a product — a vase, bowl, mug or other items — and the team will print it out in ceramics, silver, resin or plastic using the outline of that image.
It’s intriguing, though not perfect. The objects tend to be pretty pricey (in the hundreds of dollars). And in this era of immediate gratification, it can seem like forever to wait for the manufacturing and shipment. Still, it’s a novel approach that makes the technology more accessible for more people, which could help speed up adoption for this industry.
Interested? Then check out the free Sculpteo app in the iTunes App Store.