Singapore will play host to the first 3D printing expo featuring some of the major players in the 3D printing industry, including US-based 3D systems. The expo will also feature around a dozen other exhibitors from other countries, including Israel, Belgium and of course the host country of Singapore.
3D printing is a technology that has been around in some form for over 30 years. However, it is just now starting to get refined to the point where it can be commercially viable and affordable enough for consumers to start to get in on the game. The technology promises to have some significant impacts on exhibit design and can help trade show designers create new and interesting ideas for trade show exhibits.
Up to this point, 3D printing has only been used by larger firms because of the expense of the technology. However, quality machines are now available for as little as $500 making them attractive to a whole new audience. Their uses are also expanding.
3D printing has historically been used mostly for a process called rapid prototyping. This is because of the ease with which one can draw something up in a CAD program and then have a model of it built by a 3D printer. This allows a much easier demonstration of ideas for exhibit design. It can also provide a 3-dimensional model of trade show exhibits to show clients.
This expo in Singapore is expected to draw around 500 attendees and will likely be one of a number of new expos to demonstrate the ever-improving technology in this rising industry. However, only time will tell if companies like 3D Systems will be able to break into the consumer market and make their products appealing and useful to a wide enough range of individuals in order to really break open the market.
The expo that gets underway today in Singapore will be but a stepping stone to that ultimate goal, and we at Blazer Exhibits & Events will be watching with some interest.