Enrique Lores, the CEO of HP Inc., claims that 3D printer orders are not meeting early expectations, despite a brief spike during the pandemic, according to some analysts.
Although HP does not incorporate that degree of specificity into financial statistics for its 3D printer portfolio, the company stated in September 2021 that more than 100 million parts have been produced with the use of 3D printers.
CEO Steve Brazier told HP leader Lores at the recent Canalys Channels Forum in Barcelona that the market as a whole has disappointed in comparison to earlier forecasts.
“I believe it is obvious that the growth rates have not been what we all anticipated, I would say five to six years ago. But I believe that there is still a long-term opportunity. In particular, when we consider new supply chain models where manufacturing will be more scattered and local, “He clarified.
“We changed our strategy throughout the course of the last two years. The development of hardware systems, consumables, or services is no longer our sole focus. We recognised the opportunity and need to develop additional end-to-end applications “Added Lores.
For its 3D printing business, HP has a distinctive model. Their teams create the hardware and design the component, and this is frequently what is offered for sale to the customer. The vendor can “understand better what the industry trends are but also drive growth and accelerate our growth in some of the key sectors” thanks to this technique.
Canalys predicted that global market sales will increase by 43.5 percent between 2015 and 2020, reaching an annual value of $22.4 billion, in 2016, the year HP began offering 3D printing. Context estimates that in 2020, 3D printing will earn $12.6 billion in sales.
“Like other technologies, there is a lot of buzz around its beginning stages, but the use cases are specialised or at least constrained inside industrial segments,” Matthew Ball, chief analyst at Canalys, told us.
He continued, “I believe it’s the use cases. “I guess the original assumption was that every single household and every business would have one, but in the end it’s a different sort of manufacturing, micro-manufacturing,” the author says.
Ball believes that it will take off more significantly in the long run because “it’s easy to underestimate the longer term and overestimate the near term,” he says.
Consumer 3D printing saw a boom during the pandemic as customers adopted lower-end personal, kit, and hobby printers; however, sales fell off at the beginning of this year. Industrial segment recovery in Q1 was short-lived due to inflation and COVID lockdowns in China, which disrupted the supply chain.
Consumer 3D printing is not really “plug and play,” Chris Connery, global head of analysis at Context, said. “While it enables everyone to be a “maker,” printers are not “plug and play” and require constant maintenance and a certain level of patience. Since the worst of the epidemic, growth in shipments of new consumer-focused printers has levelled down.
Connery continues by saying that in the corporate world, 3D printers, which may cost anything from $5,000 to $4 million, can be found in engineering or architectural departments, on production floors, and are used to create everything from orthopaedic implants to rocket parts.
Connery noted that 3D printing’s commercial applications have advanced beyond those of simple prototype tools.
Although Jay McBain, chief analyst, told us that the market for consumers needs a worldwide platform or network where they are given the option to print a product rather than buy it, Canalys believes that 3D printing will attempt to enter the mainstream. That marked the turning moment. He claimed that his point also applied to the corporate world.