A new service for shared 3D model development has been launched by Womp.
There are plenty of industrial-level online tools to coordinate 3D modeling among participants, but they are focused on mechanical parts — and are quite expensive.
Womp, on the other hand, is targeted at individuals seeking ways to create fun 3D shapes with friends, or, as Womp puts it, “random strangers from the Internet”:
“SHARE PROJECTS IN REAL TIME WITH YOUR TEAM, FRIENDS OR RANDOM INTERNET STRANGERS. BUILD BETTER WITH WOMP.”
The service hasn’t officially launched yet, but you can access an “alpha” version that seems to be under test right now.
The entirely web-based interface presents a 3D view of a “scene” into which you can add primitives and edit the results. You can also add in pre-made models from their publicly accessible repository, which seems easy to do.
The idea is that you can work together with others on projects. For example, imagine building a cool shape and then contributing it to a bracelet model like this:
There seems to be an ability to download designs, and they do talk a lot about different 3D file formats, so it is likely the service will be able to produce 3D printable models that one can actually use.
I gave the alpha service a test, but was not able to get it to work properly: nothing appeared in the workspace. However, this is an “alpha” version, so troubles are certainly expected. Nevertheless, you can see where they are going by trying out the tool.
The service is highly integrated with current Internet services. Along with the usual social media sharing links, you’ll find a “Join Discord” button, and you’re able to “record video” of your own development process. Heh, if you happen to stray off the alpha page, the tab changes to this:
It’s a very friendly and welcoming design, and quite different in style from typical design tools.
There doesn’t seem to be a way to monetize the service, at least not yet. But you can be sure something will happen in the future, be it a subscription, advertisements, commissions on print services, export fees or something. For now there doesn’t seem to be anything, and that’s likely the right approach for a startup. Prove the tool works by growing a big audience first.
Calling the service “a new way to 3D”, Womp is poking at a different area of the market. This is about as far away from the typical “engineer’s design” as you can get. They say:
“No downloads or gray apps with 1,000 buttons. Just your browser and your creativity”.
1,000 buttons, indeed. That hurts.
There have been a few attempts to produce a viable and popular online 3D modeling tool that appeals to the mass market, but none have really succeeded yet. Could Womp be the one?