The sturdy metal frame really sets it apart from hobbyist gear, which traditionally has either a laser-cut wood chassis, or tent poles of threaded rods.
Yet another 3D printer startup company is launching. Panda Robotics of Seattle/Toronto is developing the eyponomously named “PandaBot”. PandaBot is focused as a consumer-oriented product and thus includes a number of features to make it robust and visually attractive. They say:
Our printer’s materials and aesthetics were chosen to ensure that our end product belonged on your desk. To get the most benefit from a 3D printer, it needs to be accessible to you and so has to look professional.
At this time you cannot actually order a PandaBot. Instead, they are planning to engage a Kickstarter campaign, according to a report on Ponoko, who were impressed with the prototype device they viewed. Ponoko says:
Could Panda Robotics break through into the consumer world with this device? Perhaps, but they have competition from several others pursuing the same route, the most prominent being 3D System’s Cube 3D printer.