There’s been a lot of buzz around 3-D printing lately, with some tech luminaries even calling it the next industrial revolution.
But a recent report by Tech Pro Research suggests there’s still a long way to go — at least in the enterprise sector, according to ZDNet.
In a global survey conducted last month, only 12% of the total respondents said they are “actively using 3-D printers as part of our business operations.”
The report found 40% of respondents having “no plans to evaluate or implement” 3-D printers in their organisations. Another 29% said they are evaluating 3-D printers, but have “no implementation plans at the moment,” while 19% said they might consider implementation within the next 12 months.
When asked why they’re not using 3-D printers at their workplace, an overwhelming 66% of respondents said they just had no business need for the device. Another 43% said they don’t perform engineering or manufacturing work, while about 27% said they’re “unsure of the value they may bring.”
“There’s no reason to implement a technology without a business need, but there may be better opportunities ahead for 3-D printing manufacturers to identify and communicate new business needs that organisations aren’t aware of,” the report noted.
The survey, however, only asked a total of 624 people and didn’t specify which industries they belong to, so the results should be taken with a grain of salt.
In fact, research firm Gartner said in a recent report that global shipments of 3-D printers would grow 75% in 2014 and nearly double in 2015. HP, for example, has made plans to enter the 3-D-printing market earlier this year, claiming the worldwide sales of 3-D printers and related software will reach $US11 billion by 2012.
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