In a season that has seen a number of large retailers, including Staples (US and EUR separately) and Tesco (UK) set to test 3D printers and 3D printing services to join their predominantly 2D printing offerings, UPS today announced that UPS Stores will offer a 3D printing service specifically to support Start-Ups and Small Business Owners.
There are a handful of major retailers still to announce their alignments to this or that 3D printing company or service — who will be next? Office Max? PetSmart? 7-11? And with Amazon and eBay both seeing tremendous 3D printing accessories and machine sales, will there be a new list … those retailers left behind by 3D printing?
From the press release, on Reuters:
The UPS Store® today announced it is the first nationwide retailer to test 3D printing services in-store. Select UPS Store locations will be offering the services to start-ups, small businesses and retail customers, beginning in the San Diego area with locations in additional cities across the United States in the near future.
A recent poll of small business owners conducted by The UPS Store showed high interest in trying the services, particularly for those needing to create prototypes, artistic renderings or promotional materials.
“Start-ups, entrepreneurs and small business owners may not have the capital to purchase a 3D printer on their own, but they may have a need to show prototypes to their current and potential customers,” said Michelle Van Slyke, vice president of marketing and small business solutions at The UPS Store. “By offering 3D printing capabilities in-center, we’re able to help further our small business customers’ opportunities for success.”
The UPS Store is testing the Stratasys uPrint SE Plus printer, which according to Stratasys is most well-known for its ability to print detailed objects more accurately than home 3D printers. Stratasys notes that this is particularly important when parts need to fit into each other or fit some other object. With this printer, The UPS Store locations will be equipped to produce items like engineering parts, functional prototypes, acting props, architectural models, fixtures for cameras, lights and cables…..
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