At the beginning of the month, Sony released its latest smartphone – the Xperia XZ1, along with its smaller counterpart, the Xperia XZ1 Compact. With it came an intriguing new feature – a 3D scanner! The new phone is fitted with an app called 3D Creator that allows users to take a 3D scan of any object or person simply by moving the phone around said object or person. It was hardly surprising – experts have been saying for ages that eventually everyone will be able to use their smartphone as a 3D scanner, but it’s exciting to see that prediction become a reality.
Reviews have described the scanner app as a pretty good one – it’s speedy and offers tools that allow users to easily modify their scans. 3D scans are saved in .OBJ format, so they’re compatible with just about any 3D printer – however, despite the increasing popularity and accessibility of 3D printers, still many more people have smartphones than 3D printers. Many more people have smartphones, in fact, than could name a 3D printing service bureau. So what’s an unfamiliar-with-3D-printing XZ1 user to do if they want to turn one of their smartphone scans into an actual object?
Well, they could do a quick Google search, for one thing. But Sony and Sculpteo have made things even easier through a new partnership. Users of the 3D Creator app can send their files directly to Sculpteo, which will 3D print them and deliver them anywhere in the world. The object will be 3D printed in multi-colored material, and users can choose from several options regarding size. They can also pay directly from the app; it’s a fully integrated service.
“By becoming a built-in part of our precious smartphones, 3D printing is continuing its generalization and helping to further eradicate the boundaries between the digital and the real world,” said Clément Moreau, CEO and Co-Founder of Sculpteo.
Indeed, 3D printing has been integrated with smartphones in different ways for a while now. The two technologies are maturing together, and it’s interesting to see the many ways they complement each other. The world is now full of 3D printed smartphone cases and assorted accessories, but the two technologies have been used together for much more important purposes as well. Smartphones have been paired with 3D printed attachments in order to improve detection of multiple health conditions, from pancreatic cancer to diabetic retinopathy and infertility to superbugs.
Plenty of 3D printers allow remote monitoring from smartphones, which is extremely helpful – most of us carry our smartphones everywhere we go as if they’re glued to our hands. If we can check the status of our print jobs as often as we check Facebook, we’ll have far fewer spectacular catastrophes. Many of those same 3D printers can also be controlled from our smartphones. It makes sense – we do almost everything else with our smartphones, so why shouldn’t we be able to handle our 3D printing needs with them as well? Now we – at least those of us who own Xperia XZ1 phones – can handle our 3D scanning needs with them, too, and it likely won’t be long before the technology begins appearing on most other smartphone models as well.
Discuss this story and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com, or share your thoughts below.[Images: Sony]
You May Also Like
3D Printing News Briefs, September 5, 2020
In today’s 3D Printing News Briefs, the former CEO of Carbon has joined the faculty of a prestigious university. Moving on, a 3D printing whiz and Tel Aviv professor has...
America Makes Announces Challenge for Open-Source Scanning Strategies for Metal 3D Printing
America Makes has launched a new competition to advance scanning path development in laser-based powder based additive manufacturing (AM), in partnership with GE Research and the Air Force Research Laboratory....
Raytheon Receives Funding for Aerospace 3D Printing of Optical Components
This spring, Ohio-based America Makes, the leading collaborative partner in additive technology research, discovery, and innovation for the US, announced its latest Project Call for AXIOM, or Additive for eXtreme Improvement...
Additive Flight Solutions Awarded AS9100D Certification for Commercial Aircraft 3D Printing
With increasingly stringent standards and regulations governing the aircraft industry, MRO providers must obtain the latest certifications in order to serve their customers, as well as to ensure compliance within...
View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.