Today was the official grand opening of the MakerBot Store in New York. Head over to 298 Mulberry Street and you can buy MakerBot printers, filament, and pre-made items, such as bracelets, watches and toys. And that’s not all.
MakerBot CEO Bre Pettis unveiled a new 3D photo booth powered by ShapeShot. The photo takes a couple of minutes and costs $5 for three reusable shots. Then you can order prints of your head. In 3D. Depending on the size, they run $20, $40 or $60. The most important part remains the fact that there is now a physical address to experience 3D printing.
“Ever since we started, people kept saying that this is science fiction — it’s not real. So we had to make a MakerBot Store,” Pettis said. Understanding 3D printing takes time, and a store is a good way to reach a new audience. But MakerBot also hopes to sell Replicator printers, filament and little printed objects manufactured in New York.
Most of the objects in the store have been designed within the previous week and printed over the previous two days. Such a short product cycle is something new in manufacturing. With the store, it’s all about making 3D printing mainstream.
“My hope is that the next lemonade stand for kids will be a MakerBot stand,” Pettis said. For now, NASA and GE are the two most important clients, and four of the top ten architectural companies use a Replicator. MakerBot has sold 15,000 printers so far.
When asked whether it’s possible to select a 3D design at home, print it in the store and pick it up later, Pettis answered “not yet.”