3D Hubs has landed yet another interesting partnership, but we think their deal with TurboSquid could be an important milestone.
The deal is similar to what 3D Hubs has been doing with other 3D model repositories: add the ability to request a 3D print to the models. It appears as just a button users may easily click, and transforms the otherwise inaccessible digital model into a real, physical item you hold in your hands. Powerful stuff!
As part of the deal, TurboSquid will organize special collections of their 3D models for printing on 3D Hubs community network of 3D printers. The first themed collection is “Shark Week”, which will inevitably involve a collection of ferocious sea creatures. It seems the models selected for this collection are full color items, thus requiring specialty 3D printers to reproduce them in full technicolor. As of this writing, 3D Hubs’ network includes around 250 such devices in all parts of the world.
This is all terrific, especially if you like sharks, but we believe there is a lot more to this deal than meets the eye.
Previously, 3D Hubs had partnered with various 3D model repositories in a similar manner, but those partners were repositories that specifically focused on 3D printable models.
TurboSquid is NOT focused on 3D printable models. They are a general sharing site for 3D content, almost all of which is non-printable. Typically TurboSquid content is used for visual purposes; for example, if you required a detailed model of a helicopter for a game, you could buy one from TurboSquid. While the chopper would look great in the game, it’s highly unlikely it would be printable, as it would contain many 2D elements, or discontiguous parts.
We’ve long imagined that somehow in the future there would be a way to unlock the vast amounts of visual 3D content for printing. This deal doesn’t do that, exactly, but it does demonstrate that TurboSquid has significant interest in printable 3D models.
Perhaps this could be the beginning of increased focus on printable items within TurboSquid’s vast library? We hope so.
Via 3D Hubs