The global 3D printing market
is driven by many factors such as escalating use of 3D prints in the consumer product and automotive industries, and increasing application of the technology for personal usage. The market for 3D printing is still at a nascent stage, but trends prevalent globally indicate that it will soon rise to the forefront with a frenzied fervor, as many industries are keen to adopt the technology. According to a latest report, the global market for 3D printing is expected to grow exponentially in the next five to six years. The report says that the 3D printing market, valued at US$450 million in 2013, is expected to reach US$1,432 million by the end of 2020, registering growth at an impressive CAGR of 18.0% during the period.
3D Printing is a type of additive manufacturing that is used for making a 3D object by laying down successive layers of the printing material. The technology is used across various industries such as architecture, automotive, footwear, and many more. 3D printing has many benefits such as rapid prototyping; it speeds up the manufacturing process and promotes mass customization and production. The relative simplicity of the technology of 3D printing means manufacturers are increasingly replacing traditional methods with this technology. Therefore, the global market for 3D printing is expected to flourish both in terms of commercial and personal applications in the forthcoming years.
Increased 3D Printing Application across Numerous Industries to Boost Global Demand
Low-cost, technology-driven alternatives to traditional methods have always attracted the attention of manufactures all around the world. The advent of 3D printing in the global scenario has enabled manufacturers to personalize their products as per individual preferences and reduce or eliminate the costs of tools production. Furthermore, the energy-efficient characteristic of 3D printing has made it even more popular among manufacturers globally. The increased adoption of 3D printing technology among manufacturers is expected to spur demand from the global market. Regulatory support from government bodies across the globe, increasing consumer access, and extensive application of the technology across sectors such as automotive, medical, and electronics is expected to further boost demand for 3D printing.
Inability to Mass Produce to Restrain Growth in the Market
Despite such opportunities for growth, the global 3D printing market faces many limitations. Infringement of intellectual property during duplication, for instance, is one of the major restraints to the growth of the global 3D printing market. Additionally, in spite of being technology-driven, 3D printing is not capable of mass producing, which is one of the main reasons limiting its growth in the global market. However, the market can capitalize on lucrative opportunities to associate with manufacturers who are keen to personalize their products, such as those in the healthcare or automotive sectors.
Segmentation on the Basis of Technology, Usage, Application, and Geography
The global 3D printing market can be categorized on the basis of technology, its applications, usage, and geographical distribution. The global 3D printing market can be classified into personal and commercial in terms of usage. The market can be divided into polyjet, SLS, SLA, FDM, and others, on the basis of technology. Industry-wise the global market for 3D printing can be segmented into automotive, consumer products and electronics, architecture, medical, education, and others. Geographically, the market can be divided into North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and RoW (Rest of the World).
In terms of application, the segment of consumer products and electronics emerged as the market leader, accounting for 23% of the overall market in 2013. The electronics sector is expected to remain the undisputed market leader in the forthcoming years as well, and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 17% from 2014 to 2020.