If you’ve got a cool exciting new consumer tech you can bet your bottom dollar that the Japanese market got it first and if the west lived by their innovation adoption lifecycle we’d all be laggards. It comes as a surprise then to see the Cube series of 3D printers only just hitting the Japanese high street as Yamada Denki begin to sell the Cube and CubeX.
The 3D Systems’ machines will be available immediately at the flagship store of Japan’s biggest electrical retailer. Though the printers are only currently available in one store we suspect that this is merely a pilot scheme that will lead to the additive manufacturing machines becoming much more widespread.
"We are honored to have a leading retailer of Yamada Denki's reputation bring our award-winning consumer 3D printers to Japan," said Michele Marchesan, Vice President and General Manager 3D Printers, 3D Systems.
The move does not come as a surprise what with the likes of Maplin, Amazon and Staples all dipping their toes in the water it was inevitable that a store of the size of Yamada Denki would do the same. Bringing in the Cube is a relatively risk free strategy, the machine has already been shown to sell, it is a lot more plug and play than most machines and is certified as safe for the home.
The Cube and CubeX 3D Printers are available in the store for $1,299 and starting at $2,499 USD, respectively. Although Maplin’s entry into the market is a heck of a lot cheaper, there is no self-asembly involved with the Cube machines and in fairness even if the quality doesn’t differ greatly they look much more like a product the end-consumer would buy.
It will be interesting to see the uptake on the machines in Japan and interesting to see whether this pilot scheme does indeed lead to more stores jumping into the 3D printed waters.