Could it be possible for the 3D printing market size to experience 500% growth within the next 5 years? Not only is it entirely possible, it is very probable. This technology is on the precipice of changing several industries all at the same time. In 2013, the 3D printing market size was $2.5 billion. By 2018, it is expected to be at least $16.2 billion and there are many who believe that the market can exceed that forecast.
Why is 3D printing showing such explosive growth? It is because everything from food products to industrial engineering can benefit from this technology. Not only can custom parts be created for machinery, someone can use a 3D printer in their kitchen to create custom pancakes.
Why Is Growth So Explosive For 3D Printing?
There is so much potential in the 3D printing market sizes because the main barriers to entry are being consistently addresses by those within the industry. Innovation in printing technology has greatly increased production times. Different materials can know be used so that different finishes, colors, and even metals can be used, not to mention pancake batter.
There’s also the fact that prices for 3D printing technology are falling across the board, making the market more accessible to a wider variety of demographics. As residential and entrepreneurial uses are developed for this technology, it will established itself as a prototype creator, a concept maker, and the perfect outlet for someone’s imagination. It is also proving capable of creating spare parts in the aerospace, defense, and engineering sectors so that more life can be obtained out of already created products.
The Greatest Potential Is Within the Medical Industry
We’re already seeing big growth in the 3D printing market size when it comes to prosthetics. When technology advances to the point that biological components can be custom printed to treat specific medical needs, then any number of medical applications could be achieved. Personal organ printing for replacement could eliminate waiting lists. Tendons and ligaments could be printed and attached for faster healing times. Within the next 5 years, there is forecast to be a dramatic impact on this industry from the medical sector alone.
This means the time is now to establish a presence with this industry. There is a tremendous opportunity within the short-term to meet the demand for custom products. As this process becomes more affordable and convenient, the demand will continue to increase and allow for items to be printed locally at a cheaper cost than ordering and shipping online.
What Will Affect the Growth Potential of the 3D Printing Market?
The primary variable that will be seen within this particular market is the amount of commercial printing that will be available. Depending on the speed and capabilities of future printing technologies, it is entirely possible for the market to over-saturate itself with commercial providers and this could drive down prices more than has been forecast. The result could increase the market size, but decrease the overall amount of revenue that is generated.
The 3D printing market is one of the fastest evolving markets that currently exists, but its infancy works against it in some ways because one of the barriers to entry is a lack of knowledge. A medical provider right now doesn’t know how to print a tendon. As new entrants come forth and provide access to the technologies that will allow these barriers to follow, it is very possible for the 3D printing market size to look very different in 5-10 years than it does right now.
Visual Technologies Could Further Enhance 3D Printing
New technologies on the horizon, including 3D digital cameras, look to further enhance the quality of the 3D printing market size on several fronts. Imagine taking a picture on a camera and then being able to print that image out using 3D technology to replicate it accurately in a wide variety of mediums. The creative industries could become just as much a driver of future growth in the 3D printing market size as the medical industry could.
Because this industry is evolving so fast, the opportunity to get involved could close at a moment’s notice. Big players will get involved in the future because the potential for profits are enormous. Only those who are lean and mean right now will be able to survive. This market is about to grow up and when it does, the results could be amazing. That’s why all of the forecasts that are currently offered could be very accurate… or so inaccurate that we will all laugh about this information 5 years from now.