Dell today announced a partnership with MakerBot to offer Replicator 3D printers and scanners to small and medium-sized businesses looking for faster and more affordable ways of prototyping. The products are slated to become available for purchase from Dell’s 3D printing webpage on February 20 in the US.
Dell argues that adding MakerBot 3D printers and scanners to its existing portfolio of workstations will let it offer an end-to-end 3D design solution: engineers can design and test new product concepts, architects can create 3D prototypes during the design phase, and startups can experiment with new product designs and artistic models. The deal ensures MakerBot Replicator products will be the only FDM technology sold through Dell’s small business channel in the US.
Here is the product lineup Dell plans to sell:
- MakerBot Replicator 2 Desktop 3D Printer – 100-micron layer resolution and a 410-cubic-inch build volume priced at $2,199.
- MakerBot Replicator 2X Experimental 3D Printer – features experimental dual extrusion optimized for printing with MakerBot ABS Filament, available for $2,799.
- MakerBot Replicator Mini Compact 3D Printer – fast and easy one-touch 3D printing will be available in the spring at an anticipated price of $1,375.
- MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D Printer – provides a large build volume and fast print times to accelerate rapid prototyping and model making, available for pre-order at $2,899.
- MakerBot Replicator Z18 3D Printer – massive build volume and the best price to performance ratio in its category, available in the spring of 2014 for $6,499.
- MakerBot Digitizer Desktop 3D Scanner – optimized for use MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D Printers and MakerBot Thingiverse, available at the price of $949.
Unsurprisingly, MakerBot is very pleased with the announcement. “Partnering with Dell is another step in building out the MakerBot 3D Printing Ecosystem that makes 3D printing easy and accessible for everyone,” MakerBot CEO Bre Pettis said in a statement. “Dell has done a great job with supporting and enabling small businesses, and we are excited to bring our 3D printing solutions to their customers to unlock their creativity.”
MakerBot certainly gains more exposure for its product line, while Dell can say it is helping small businesses find cost-effective alternatives to enlisting off-site or overseas prototyping facilities. If the two companies are right, a growing number of American designers and engineers will soon be designing, building, and iterating faster and cheaper with 3D printing.
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