3D printing is disruptive technology

Chris Anderson’s upcoming book “Makers” talks about how 3D printing allowed him to easily, quickly, and cheaply make doll house furniture for his daughters and that “If you’re a toy company, this story should give you chills.”

Further, we are currently at the dot matrix equivalent of 3D printing. In a few years, 3D printers will be much faster and more powerful.

They will be able to print images on the surface of an object even finer than the best toy factories today. They may even be able to print electronic circuits right into the object itself. Just add batteries.

Disruptive innovation

A disruptive innovation is an innovation that helps create a new market and value network, and eventually goes on to disrupt an existing market and value network (over a few years or decades), displacing an earlier technology.