With so many 3D printing opportunities starting to pop up around the world, it's in the world of enterprise where it could be the most beneficial. This doesn't necessarily mean things are moving fast in that department. In fact, evidence suggests too many businesses have yet to take the plunge into 3D printing to prove how nascent the technology still is to much of the mainstream. But the interesting news is that this holding off period may not last forever.
A new poll was conducted in June showing 60% of all enterprises are already using 3D printing or considering it. Through this consideration, these businesses are also evaluating 3D printing to see what it could possibly do for them. It means they're taking it seriously, even if they aren't using 3D printing in the immediate term.
It's the details of the poll, though, that show more interesting data about what initial business reaction is to 3D printing. Other information shows what businesses are doing with the 3D printers they already own. You might be surprised at what the most common usage is for 3D printers in the small percentage of businesses using them.
3D Printers for Testing of Products
With only 623 businesses polled through a company called Tech Pro Research, it may not give a complete picture of the business reality. Considering some enterprises are using it secretly, there could be more going on than numbers indicate. Nevertheless, this poll found that businesses owning 3D printers are using them primarily for testing of ideas or concepts.
This might be quite different from what you think businesses are using 3D printers for lately. Prototyping was second and manufacturing of parts was third, as much as you might think it would be first.
Other Surprising Data
What also might surprise you is that 66% of the poll respondents said 3D printing wasn't needed in their organization. It explains why only 12% of the respondents actually used 3D printers. However, with their strong consideration, it won't be much longer until they change their minds. All it takes is seeing what their competition is doing before they dive right in.
Even when used for product testing alone, 3D printers already show their worth in saving money and gaining answers quicker. In that regard, the numbers are likely to change exponentially by this time next year.
As larger enterprises start revealing secret 3D printing projects, nothing will keep 3D printing from being a part of every company in some form or another. Those who think it can't help them will find out just how comprehensive 3D printers are in creating nearly anything.