This is interesting: manufacturers use 3D Hubs as a 3D printing infrastructure provider.
3D Hubs is a community network of 3D printers available to provide printing services on request. Those having idle machines often make use of such networks to keep their machines busy and make some extra cash. 3D Hubs has also provided an ability to directly hook into their printer network to create higher-level applications.
One of them is FairPhone, a mobile phone case maker, who’s focused on using “fair” business practices. They wish to promote the development of local economies and safe employment practices. It seems totally natural they’d use 3D Hubs’ services as that community is in fact local folks worldwide willing to do your 3D printing.
FairPhone is ran a “Design a Day” promotion this past summer to develop unique mobile cases for sale, which were then produced through 3D Hubs’ network.
We’re fascinated with this approach, as it empowers those with 3D printing ideas to develop their offerings without having to worry about the logistics and details of printing or even shipping.
FairPhone is certainly not the last creator using 3D Hubs’ network; we think this concept will continue to grow rapidly, as inventive folks develop new applications. Even better, the other major 3D print services also offer similar integration capabilities, providing options.