Staples starts selling

Staples starts selling 3-D printers

3D Systems The Cube can print 3-D plastic objects, and it is now available at Staples.

3-D printers have officially gone mainstream. You can now get one at Staples for $1,300.

Staples(SPLS)says it is the first major U.S. retailer to sell a 3-D printer. It began selling The Cube, made by3D Systems(DDD), on Friday, and the printer will hit many of the retailers brick-and-mortar stores by June.

While 3-D printers have long been used in industrial manufacturing, a recent maker movement is slowly popularizing in-home versions of the devices.

The Cube, like other 3-D printers, is a machine that creates physical, three-dimensional objects. The printer uses a digital design file as a blueprint, then builds the item layer by layer with plastic. Users can print anything they can design, including action figures, iPhone docks and coffee cup holders.

The Cube can print items up to five-and-a-half inches tall, wide and long in 16 different colors, and it comes packaged with 25 free design templates. Shares of Cube maker 3D Systems rose 4% after the announcement but ended the day up 1%. Staples stock closed nearly 3% higher.

George Young, a partner at 3D Systems shareholder Villere & Co., says the Staples announcement validates 3D Systems mission, because theyve been saying their technology can cover all ends of the spectrum — from manufacturing lines to consumers homes. And a retailer like Staples is obviously cognizant about what their customers want.

3D Systemssays it is devoted to the democratization of 3-D printers, making the complex and expensive technology available to the masses. But the company faces a lot of upstart competition.

Perhaps the buzziest 3-D printer company is Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Makerbot, which unveiled its $2,800Replicator 2xat the Consumer Electronics Show in January.

Following Makerbots success,crowdfunding site Kickstarterquickly became full of similarly named rivals: Printrbot, TangiBot, Ultra-Bot, RigidBot, Gigabot, and Bukobot.

While many 3-D printer owners may be using the devices to prototype inventions or simply have fun making plastic toys, other industries are tapping into the printers potential.Chefs are using the printersto create intricately designed food. Doctors are even experimenting with advanced versions of the machines to makeartificial organs and prosthetic limbs.

In some cases, 3-D designs have been controversial. Makerbot found itself under pressure to crack down on downloadable designs forprintable gun partslate last year, after the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. MakerBots design file repository, called Thingiverse, had long prohibited the creation of weapons — but they were loosely enforced before the crackdown in December.

First published May 3, 2013: 10:42 AM ET

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Staples teams up with Sculpteo to offer online 3D printing services

Staples has been keen to offer its customers access to both 3D printers andprinting servicesforquite some time. Today, though, the company announced that its teaming up withSculpteoon a new online 3D printing platform. In other words, youll be able to upload your designs or choose from a collection of pre-designed models before adding text or images, selecting from different materials and more. Sculpteo, a 3D-printing outfit with experience inbulk orders, will use its know-how to power the online service that looks to offer a better option for customers. Staples previously managed 3D printing through its own in-house Copy & Print counters. If youd rather manage the entire process, the retailersells 3D printers, too. However, if youd rather not splurge for the whole setup, the new service is scheduled to go live worldwide next week.

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Staples Technology Solutionshas been working with customers in the 3D printing space for some time. The companys Australian managing director,Karl Sice, says vendors need to overcome limitations of the technology before it really takes off.

At this stage, our sales of 3D technology are very limited. A lot of the conversations we are having are conceptual, he toldARN.

Sice explained that there were currently two main barriers to adoption.

Cost is one but the other issue is that most printers will only perform a single type of 3D outcome. Normal laser or inkjet printers allow you to do a number of different applications, thats not possible today with 3D. Its designed for a single use and that is quite limiting.

As vendors make the move to commoditise the market, I think it will take off in its own right. Everybody I have spoken to who is across this technology, partner or customer, is excited for it and realises its potential. The ball is now back in the vendors court to make it realistic and multi-purpose so that people can take advantage of it properly.

Sice recently returned from the first conference HP Inc. held since the split from HP Enterprise and spoke about some of the conversations he had with HP president imaging printing and solutions, Enrique Lores, about the future of 3D printing.

We took the opportunity during this trip to talk about some of the markets including healthcare and education, how we can go to market as partners in those verticals and generate growth around some of the new technologies that HP is bringing to market. he said.

For Staples, the 3D print space is exciting because it gives us a chance to grow the business much more quickly than would ordinarily be possible. The growth in that market is only just beginning.

Currently, the applications of the technology are single purpose, as we go forward that will evolve and we will be able to take advantage of that evolution as well.

Sice said in healthcare and education, he saw opportunity for growth.

In healthcare there is a lot of pressure on the private aged care market not just in the for-profit organisations, but also in the organisations trying to provide solutions more quickly and deliver healthcare outcomes much more effectively.

Even in its current form, 3D printing allows you to take solutions to the healthcare market which would be possible without the technology but would take much longer to deploy.

3D printing allows you to do a number of things, its more than just prototyping, even in the pharma market which supports healthcare, it allows them to go to market much more effectively and quickly, getting them solutions outcomes more quickly.

There is a really good example in education, I sat down with a university and the way they were looking at 3D printing was for the design school. 3D printing would allow them to eliminate some of the plastic, clay and paper that they currently use to do prototype designs and also mainstream designs for the market. They can move to a situation where they can do in minutes what would have previously taken weeks.

The ability to go from design to product using 3D technology is a massive shift, not only killing a whole lot of process, but you can imagine the cost savings as well, he added.

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Staples Makes 3D Printing Easy With In-Store Service

Staples Makes 3D Printing Easy With In-Store Service

Posted 4:00 AM, July 16, 2014, byJacob Chung,

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Staples Makes 3D Printing Easy With In-Store Service

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3D printing is a growing industry, but the equipment is still expensive. Now one retailer is making it easier to create just about anything you can think of.

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Staples was the first major retailer to sell 3D printers, now theyve opened3D print shopsinside stores inLos AngelesandNew York. Recently we got a chance to try out the emerging technology and print a 3D version of ourselves.

Heres how Richs 3DMe turned out! You can try making one yourself, right from home by visiting

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Is 3D Printing Coming to a Staples Near You?

3D Printing, the white-hot technology thats promising to transform everything from car repair to bio medicine, is now moving into the most mundane of locations: your local Staples. A European unit of Staples and Ireland-based 3D printing company Mcor have announced plans to bring 3D printing to a handful of European Staples stores in early 2013, and promise to roll it out to other countries shortly after that.

Dubbed Staples Easy 3D, the new service is pretty straightforward. Customers upload CAD or other 3D-printable files to Staples Office Center. Staples prints them on one ofMcors Iris 3D color printers. Customers can then either pick up their3D-printedobjects at the store, or have them shipped to them. Customized parts, prototypes, art objects, architectural models, medical models and 3D maps are items customers need today, in a more affordable and more accessible manner, said Wouter Van Dijk, president of the Staples Printing Systems Division in Europe.

Access to 3D printing services at a local Staples could be a shortcut for consumers anxious to get started in 3D printing. Companies likeMakerBotcurrently sell home 3D printers for roughly $2,300, a price tag likely considered out of the reach of most consumers. Mcor executives acknowledge, though, that 3D printing is following the well-worn path of 2D printing: better equipment, more accessibility and much lower prices. Even so, they dont think consumers will have their own 3D printers in the short term. Until that time, consumers will look to service bureaus, said Co-Founder and CEO Dr. Conor MacCormack.

Its also unlikely consumers will have access to an in-home, full-color 3D-printer any time soon. Mcors Iris reportedly prints in more than 1 million colors.

3D printing service bureaus is not a new idea. U.S.-basedShapewayslets consumers design 3D objects and then have the service print and sent them to their homes. On the other hand, many consumers have probably never heard of Shapeways, but good luck running into anyone who couldnt point you to the nearest Staples.

The announcement, which was made at Euromold in Germany (World Fair for Moldmaking and Tooling, Design and Application Development) did not include details on how long it will take to print each object or, more importantly, price per print. Our guess itll cost a fair bit more than a sheaf of bright white paper.

Mashablehas reached out to Staples U.S. division for comment on the announcement and details on service availability outside of Europe and will update this post with their comments.

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Staples Easy 3D printing service set to launch in 2013

Staplesis set to launch its own3D printingservice in 2013 called Staples Easy 3D. Alas, however, it is slated for launch in Belgium and the Netherlands, so most of us will have to shelve our 3D models for now. This comes after a deal made between Staples and Mcor Technologies, bringing 3D printing to the average consumer.

Staples Easy 3D will be something the average consumer will find easy to utilize. The service works by having a customer upload a model file to Staples Office Center, at which point it will be printed. Once finished, depending on the customers preference, the model will either be shipped or can be picked up at the nearest Staples store.

President of Staples Printing Systems Division in Europe Wouter Van Dijk offered this statement. Given our market leadership in commercial print, why would we ever stop at two dimensions? Customised parts, prototypes, art objects, architectural models, medical models and 3D maps are items customers need today, in a more affordable and more accessible manner. Mcor will help us to keep prices low, quality high and colour brilliant as we meet the demand.

The service will launch in the first quarter of next year, and will be available soon after that in other countries. This is an excellent step in bringing the reality of 3D printing to the general public, and will provide an accessible way for consumers to create 3D models at a time when 3D printers arent an easily obtainable commodity. Theres no word on how much itll cost to use the service.

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Staples announces in-store 3-D printing service

Updated 2118 GMT (0518 HKT) November 30, 2012

Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out whats happening in the world as it unfolds.

The move by Staples, an established corporation, to offer 3-D printing further legitimizes a rapidly growing field.

A new service will allow customers to print 3-D objects at Staples office-supply stores

The printers generate objects using reams of paper that are cut, stacked and glued together

Staples Easy 3D will launch in the Netherlands and Belgium in the first quarter of 2013

Pretty soon youll be able to print your 3-D projects at the local Staples.

A new service called Staples Easy 3D will allow customers to upload their designs to Staples website, then pick up the printed objects at their local office supply megastore, or have them shipped to their home or business not unlike the photo- and document-printing service the company already offers.

The project was announced today atEuromold 2012by 3-D printer manufacturerMcor Technologies, who is partnering with Staples to provide its newIris printersfor the service.

The Iris printers employ an innovative method to generate objects, using reams of paper that are cut and printed while being stacked and glued together. This technique allows for a high-resolution layer thickness of 100 microns, similar to that of the MakerBot Replicator 2, but not quite as fine as the 25-micron capability of theForm 1.

The new printers also incorporate the ability to add photorealistic coloring something that more common plastic printers cant yet achieve. But while the glued paper is said to have a wood-like hardness, the arrangement of the layered paper grain will require special consideration for certain design layouts (this can affect other types of 3-D printers as well).

And while the company says it is able to be drilled, tapped or screwed, its material properties are unknown compared to traditional materials like real wood or steel.

Still, the move by an established corporation to offer 3-D printing further legitimizes the adoption of the rapidly growing field by the mass market. Similar services currently exist, being offered by companies likeShapewaysandSculpteo, but this is the first to be made available from a chain retailer.

Staples Easy 3D will launch in the Netherlands and Belgium in the first quarter of 2013, and will be rolled out to other countries shortly afterword. No word yet on pricing or when it will reach the United States.

Staples to Offer 3D Printing Services in the US

Staples to Offer 3D Printing Services in the US

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Staples to Offer 3D Printing Services in the US

Worldwide office supplies retailer Staples (SPLS) has been creeping its way into the world of 3D printing year by year.  In order to test the 3D printed waters, the company began by offering 3D printing services in Europe and online usingMcors full color 3D paper printing technology.  The partnership made perfect sense as both the 3D printer manufacturer and the office supplier are big fans of standard A4 paper.  Then, Staples started selling desktop 3D printers, beginning with the3D Systems Cube in the United StatesandAfinias H-Series in Canada.  The company has just announced that it will be taking another step into full 3D expansion by offering 3D printing services in its US stores, with pilot programs launched in two stores in Los Angeles and New York.

The 3D printing service takes the office suppliers already existent 2D printing services, which have been around for about two years, to the third dimension.  Not only can you wander into a Staples store and have your brochures, large format posters, and save-the-dates printed on glossy paper or cardstock, but you can have the CAD files for your prototype, anniversary present, or replacement part 3D printed.  As the companys US partner is 3D Systems, the stores will use 3D Systems technology to produce these prints, some of which can be handled in-store.  For larger, more complex projects, the job will be outsourced to 3D Systems.

What the office supplier hopes to do to distinguish themselves from online service providers like Shapeways is to walk customers through the design and print process, step-by-step.  That way, they can serve clients with already created CAD files, like engineers and designers, as well as those who lack experience in 3D design. Damien Leigh, senior vice president of business services at Staples, says, The way we envision this working is from soup to nuts. At the same time that Staples will provide these services, they also envision their new in-store service centers as mini Maker Faires where customers would get to see 3D printing first-hand.

The New York store has seven 3D printers that use six different materials, with prints ranging wildly in price depending on the size of a job. I eventually tracked down the Los Angeles location that is now offering the services, as well as live 3D printing demonstrations and all sorts of fun stuff.  In Studio City, at 12605 Ventura Blvd, the Staples now has, on display and running, a Cube 2 3D printer.  Also located on site, an available for use are the Cube X and the ProJet 460 Plus 3D printer, which is the machine used to make all of those colorful gypsum, sandstone-looking prints you see.

In fact, this Staples location will be obtaining a3DMe photobooth, with which to scan your head and shoulders and stick onto an action figure. Until then, they also have a Sense 3D scanner for purchase, as does Staples online and 200 or so other Staples in the country.  In Studio City, you the Sense and iSense 3D scanner, for iPad, are available for customers to toy around with. I was also told that, in the near future, Staples will be the first US retailer to carry the ProJet 1200, the micro-SLA 3D printer for creating castable models used in jewelry making and dentistry. Still no definitive word on the eventual sale of the CubeJet 3D printer, though.

Again, I was assured that, if this Staples location didnt have the type of printing I was looking for, such as sugar, chocolate, ceramic, metal, etc., the store could use 3D Systems cloud service to have it printed by 3D Systems themselves.  And the stores both have 3DS representatives temporarily on site, training the staff on the technology and protocols of 3D printing. All very exciting stuff! If Good Ol Neil were around today, hed say, Thats one small step for an office supplies chain and one giant leap for the 3D printing industry.

What was less exciting was the journey I had to go through to track down this LA store.  Every customer service rep, and especially the 3D Systems person I spoke with, was extremely nice.  What I do worry about, however, is the typical service Im used to having at chain stores.  Tracking down the store took about two hours and I fear that it may reflect the experience offered by Staples,UPS, and other chain stores that have announced new 3D printing services.  I first Googled staples los angeles 3d printing and, as youd expect, got results of the announcement, rather than tangible data. So, I searched via Google Maps, instead.

I called them up and, after being told to call back and speak with a Copy and Print specialist, was subsequently directed to another location with more information.

It went on like this for over an hour.

I was told to go to the Staples website where I might find the store I was looking for.

When I couldnt find it there, I chatted with a live customer service operator online.

Before trying to sell me some paper (full transcript below), he directed me to the corporate customer service line.  I called the customer service line and the operator was extremely friendly in looking for the LA location with 3D printing services, but she, too, ultimately sent me elsewhere, connecting me with the corporate headquarters. Finally, after being on hold for about twenty minutes, I got the info for the Studio City store and learned all of the details listed above.  After speaking with the 3DS rep, my excitement in the prospects of widespread 3D printing adoption was renewed, but only after a long, long trip.

Irreverently speaking, perhaps more impressive than the 3D print services that may be offered by the company is the breadth of hold music Ive heard today.  I definitely prefer the electropop at the Santa Monica/Vermont store to the generic classical music at some of the others.  I was going to make an audio experience of my journey, but I realized half way through that  no one wants to listen to a series of Staples employees telling me to call other locations, interspersed with voice recordings and hold music.  So, at the very least, here is the transcript of my chat with Arbind C.

The following information is a log of your sessi
on. Please save the log for your records.

Your session ID for this chat is 6781664.

System: Welcome to Staples Live Chat. We will be with you shortly.

System: For security purposes, please do not send credit card information through chat. Should credit information be required for a transaction, a Staples associate will contact you by phone for the required information.

Session Started with Agent (Arbind C.)

Agent (Arbind C.): Hello Michael, my name is Arbind. Thank you for contacting Staples Live Support. You will receive a transcript of this chat via email at the conclusion of this session. How can I help you today?

Michael Molitch-Hou: Hi, hows it going?

Agent (Arbind C.): I am fine.

Agent (Arbind C.): Thank you for asking .

Michael Molitch-Hou: No problem.

Agent (Arbind C.): How can I help you today?

Michael Molitch-Hou: I read an article today that said that Staples had launched 3D printing services in one of its Los Angeles stores.

Michael Molitch-Hou: And I was trying to find out which one

Michael Molitch-Hou: so that I could call them and ask them about it.

Michael Molitch-Hou: Do you know which one it is?

Agent (Arbind C.): I request you to contact the store directly as they will be able to assist you with this .

Agent (Arbind C.): I can provide you the contact number of the store.

Michael Molitch-Hou: thatd be great!

Agent (Arbind C.): Sure.

Agent (Arbind C.): Could you help me with the zip?

Michael Molitch-Hou: Well, Im not sure which Staples in Los Angeles has the 3D printing services, so Im not sure which zip to give you.

Michael Molitch-Hou: Sorry!

Michael Molitch-Hou: I was hoping to find out which store it was that had the services

Agent (Arbind C.): OKAY LET ME CHECK .

Agent (Arbind C.): I am sorry for the caps.

Agent (Arbind C.): Your request would be best handled by speaking with an expert directly. I recommend contacting our Customer Service Department at1-.They provide a service that will help you .

Michael Molitch-Hou: Thanks!

Agent (Arbind C.): You are welcome.

Agent (Arbind C.): I also recommend you to take a look on this paper deal as you may need this .

Agent (Arbind C.): Is there anything else I may assist you with?

Michael Molitch-Hou: No thanks. Thank you for your help!

Agent (Arbind C.): Thank you for choosing Staples Live Support. We appreciate your business with us. Have a wonderful day.

Michael Molitch-Hou previously served as Editor-in-Chief of 3D Printing Industry, he is now the Editor of Engineering . coms 3D printing section. He has covered additive manufacturing technology day in and day out since 2012 and has hundreds of article to his credit. He is the founder of The Reality Institute.

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Staples is about to bring 3D printing to the masses

Were about to learn whether3D printing will ever have mainstream appealbecause Staples is now offering both an in-store printing service as well as actual 3D printers. The cheapest printer costs$1,300, which is fairly steep, but shipping is free. Shoppers can now also walk into stores and ask for the employees to help them to design and print objects on the spot.

Even more interestingly, in Netherlands there isa Staples websitewhere people can upload their 3D designs, place them in certain categories and tag them with keywords. The MyEasy3D service can be used by creative people to set up their own3D printingretailing shops where consumers can browse and buy their designs. Presumably, Staples is going to introduce the service in the U.S. market at some point if the Dutch trial goes well.

So how captivating are the first 3D design stores? Its pretty eccentric, as you would expect from quirky Dutch people. There areCeltic skullsMorris Mini Minor Mark 1959 miniature carand extremelygeneric looking jewelry. Nothing so far seems compelling, wildly original or worth ordering from a 3D printing shop rather than some other online retailing website.

What it all boils to is the 3D printing industry is still looking for commercial hooks that are going to really engage consumers. Lets see how the New York run ofStaples 3D printing service goes this spring, because it could be the start of 3D printings big breakthrough.

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Staples is entering the 3D printing industry with their own print service

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Staples is entering the 3D printing industry with their own print service

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In a collaboration with Mcor Technologies, the Printing Systems Division of Staples is launching a new 3D printing service called Staples Easy 3D. This service offers low-cost and (high quality) colored 3D printed products to consumers, product designers, architects and so on. The service is offered online via the Staples Office Centre. Here you can simply upload your CAD files and pick up the printed models in a nearby Staples store or have them shipped to your home.

Given our market leadership in commercial print, why would we ever stop at two dimensions? said President Wouter Van Dijk, president of the Staples Printing Systems Division in Europe. Customised parts, prototypes, art objects, architectural models, medical models and 3D maps are items customers need today, in a more affordable and more accessible manner. Mcor will help us to keep prices low, quality high and colour brilliant as we meet the demand.

As announced, all products will be printed with the Mcor IRIS printer. This is a 3D printer with currently the highest color capability in the industry combined with the lowest operating costs of any commercial-class 3D printer. Seeing that they will use only this printer for their service, their choice in materials will be very limited. If they want to compete with current 3D print services like Shapeways and Sculpteo, they will have to make their pricing very attractive or expand their printer farm with printers that can print other materials (like metal) as well. So we are very curious about how this collaboration is going to work out.

The online platform for Staples Easy 3D will initially be made available in the Netherlands and Belgium in Q1 2013 and will be rolled out quickly to other countries, according to Oscar Pakasi, director business development of Staples Printing Systems, who is responsible for developing the concept and the design of the Staples Easy 3D print service platform.

SourceNews Blaze, Hat tip to Alewijn

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