The state of 3D printing 2015 vs 2016 | Sculpteo Blog

The state of 3D printing 2015 vs 2016

Posted By Jess Hedstrom on Feb 17, 2016 | 0 comments

Welcome to our prediction of the “State of 3D Printing 2016” survey results. We can all agree that there is no way to know the future of this industry, and any professional in the 3D printing industry will tell you even with the best statistics and surveys there’s no way to tell what the future will bring for this technology. Expert engineers and entrepreneurs have been utilizing our  “State of 3D Printing 2015” survey results to become more aware of the growing eco-system. Today we will look at the 2015 results, and make a prediction about the 2016 results.

The 2015 State of 3D Printing survey was the first quantitative study of 3D printing professionals and experts, the statistics were based on how the eco-system defined itself. This means that instead of compiling our member’s responses to the survey questions, we instead compiled the responses of any professional that utilized 3D printing for their business or furthering their education. This means that the sample of surveyors is a great representation of what’s going on in the industry as a whole. Last year’s sample consisted of 1,118 respondents across the world. We received responses from across 16 different verticals, you can find them listed below. If you are a professional from of an underrepresented vertical that you do not see below we urge you to participate in the 2016 survey.

The 2015 3D Printing Survey Results

We revealed our results around May 2015 and based on our participant’s responses we discovered that material and supply costs were important determining factors in the adoption of 3D printing technology in the professional sector, along with machine consistency and capabilities. You can see the breakdown of the results in the image above.

Spending on additive manufacturing increased by 68%  from 2014-2015, and the biggest reason for increased spending according to the responses from our surveyors was to accelerate the product development process. This a very unique benefits of 3D printing! To speed up the iteration and production process means that products can be created with less times between iterations, and the feedback loop between QA testing and tweaking is shorter.


What do we think will happen for the State of 3D Printing report 2016

At this point over 900 professionals have provided their responses to our survey, we are expecting to have participants continue to provide their information over the coming months. We can expect to see that the verticals have increased slightly from the 2015 – 2016 report we’re suspecting that there will be increase in verticals but not by much. Maybe one or two additional verticals. The reason that we predict a slight increase in verticals is because many professionals have become more aware of the benefits of 3D printing for their companies. However, as we saw last year many of the participants were already increasing their investments in 3D printing technology, which indicates that the increase in use will come from verticals currently using the technology rather than a flood of new verticals integrating the technology.

In 2015 our 3D printing survey statistics showed that reverse engineering, team training and  understanding customer needs were not important determining factors in the adoption of 3D printing; we expect to see an increase in these percentages, meaning that more people will determine that these factors are not important in the adoption of the technology.

We do however expect to see an increase in the percentage for material & supply cost being very important to adoption of the technology, partially due to the new verticals that we predict will show up on this survey, but also due to the drop in cost for 3D printers, 3D printing services and materials. If you have not participated in this year’s State of 3D printing survey make sure your represented. As a thank you we provide you with a 10% off code.

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