Harvey Norman 3D Printing
Picture of a MakerBot Replicator 2 at Harvey Norman Blanchardstown store
The biggest computer and electrical retailer in Ireland opened their largest store yet on a retail park outside of Dublin recently and is set to offer both a 3D Printing service and retail desktop 3D printers.
Opinion is split on whether 3D printing will become an in-store service, an in-home product or both and whereas the likes of Maplin, Tesco and Amazon are going one way or another, Harevey Norman have stolen a march in the Emerald Isle by offering both in one place.
The press release lays out the plans for this strategy “Two options will be offered to consumers for 3D printing, the first is a 3D printing service at the Harvey Norman PhotoCentre, where customers can provide their own 3D models and pricing will be offered on a case-by-case basis depending on the complexity of the design, material used and time taken. Harvey Norman will also be working on a small range of easy to print items for customers to customise and order e.g. phone cases. And the second option for customers is to order a 3D printer for home use.”
Interestingly the printer that Harvey Norman plan on having in all 12 of their stores before Christmas, is not a RepRap-like kit but the MakerBot Replicator 2. Whereas Maplin’s printer requires assembly the MakerBot Replicator 2 will be a product consumers should be able to pick up off the sheld, plug-and-play and be printing within minutes of arriving home.
The MakerBot Replicator 2 will retail at approximately €2099 in Harvey Norman and will be available to order from the end of August in Harvey Norman Blanchardstown.
It is not yet clear what printer Harvey Norman plan to have as their in-store service but it seems like the Stratasys uPrint is the go to printer for retail outlets, as both UPS and Color Company have this printer it would not be a surprise if the Irish chain followed suit.