While it’s not always fun to see March roar in famously like that fierce post-winter lion, with winds that blow the mail right out of your hands in the afternoon, we do rather enjoy seeing a good shakeup otherwise when it comes to competition in the 3D printing marketplace. And for the Worldwide 3D Printing Trends Report for March 2016, we see not only some manufacturers trading top spots, but also note that 3D Hubs has added 1,000 new hubs to their network. If you consider how this keeps growing every month, the numbers are impressive. This takes the hubs from 26,500 last month to 27,500 for March.
The ‘Highest Rated Printers’ have been holding steadier than usual over the past few months. And while that may leave us little to delve into, if you are shopping around for a desktop 3D printer, here are some good indicators of what hub users are certainly enjoying—and many of them. Again, the PowerSpec 3D Pro takes the gold for month three of the year—and 3D Hubs points out that indeed they are ‘rocking 2016.’ They also have good company with the CEL Robox in second now, moving up two spots, edging closer! We see also—not surprisingly–that the Zortrax M200 is back in the top five, along with the Prusa Steel, who dropped back a tad.
The ‘Industrial Printers’ category tends to be extremely stable as far as 3D Hubs goes, and we usually see little change here. For March, however, wake up! Indeed, we see that the Objet30 Prime has leapt into first place, knocking the steady Eden260 down a spot. There are other changes as well as we see the ProJet 460Plus falling back, and with the EOSINT P 760 entering the top five as the first SLS printer in the bunch. Also new, showing up in the top ten now, is the Objet Connex500—unique in that it is able to print with multiple materials and colors.
‘Trending Printers’ is one of our favorite categories, as it really helps us take a pulse on what’s up and coming. Currently—and quite impressively—we see the Form 2 on top as the ‘most trending’ printer, showing a growth of 49.1%. With the Discover 200 taking silver and the Duplicator I3 falling back one, we see the da Vinci 1.0 Junior fall back a bit, but still landing at #4. Rounding out the coveted top five is the Mark One Composite, which 3D Hubs recommends as ‘a highly compelling dual-nozzle 3D printer that’s capable of printing industrial strength carbon reinforced parts.’
And still within the top ten, the Lulzbot Taz 5 has climbed several rungs to #6, while the Nobel 1.0 makes headlines, standing out as the only SLA printer making it in the top ten. 3D Hubs points out that the only other machines to do so have been Formlabs’ ‘high-end’ 3D printers.
The ‘Top Print Cities’ category hasn’t changed much with the exception of San Francisco knocking Boston down a rung. Other small details are as follows:
- New York remains on top, but also grew 6.1% MoM to 452 3D printers
- Amsterdam—headquarters for 3D Hubs–was fastest growing city with 7.2% MoM growth
- Los Angeles and London are both boasting over 300 locations
(Also, be sure to check out the 3D Hubs calendar for events near you, or where you might be traveling.)
In the ‘Printer Model Distribution’ category, the Ultimaker 2 has now also (meeting up with the Prusa i3’s same accomplishment from last month) surpassed the 2000 printer mark. Without much else going on in this category, we might also note that the RepRap knocked down Ultimaker 1 a notch to reach #6.
In ‘Printer Manufacturer Distribution,’ indeed we do see more excitement than normal. As 3D Hubs reports, “MakerBot has been dethroned!” This is momentous for Ultimaker most certainly, as in adding 100 more printers, they have exceeded the 3000 mark and now own the title as the manufacturer boasting the most 3D printers being used in the 3D Hubs network.
‘Popular Printers by Region’ shows us a little movement, as the FlashForge Creator Pro moves into 4th to take over the Replicator 2x.
“In Europe, both the Prusa i3 and the Zortrax M200 have managed to gain relative market share this month, whereas the other printers in the top 5 fell back slightly,” states the 3D Hubs team. “The Ultimaker 2 has increased its lead in Asia, whereas the other remained the same.”
In the ‘Average Order Value per Material’ category, we saw the following small changes:
- The average order size for ABS has increased slightly to $34.
- PLA fell back to $31.3.
- The average value of resin printing orders also remained fairly stable at $50.7.
- The average price of nylon (SLS) orders have increased by $5.7 to $85.3.
- PolyJet has increased slightly to $89,5.
- Full color sandstone decreased by $1 to $96.7.
What’s your favorite category to check out in this report each month? Discuss in the 3D Hubs 3D Printing Trends Report forum over at 3DPB.com.
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