Some folks think Apple will enter the 3D printer market. I'm dubious, but, whoever the vendors, someone's going to make money off the market if data from MarketsandMarkets is correct.
The research group predicts the 3D printing market will be worth US$8.41 billion by 2020. The elements behind the rapid upsurge in the market are the innovative and advanced technologies, customized products, governments funding, wide unexploited application market, rapid development of the products at a low cost, and less time-to-market, according to MarketsandMarkets.
Europe is expected to surpass America in terms of the 3D Printing Market revenue by 2020. The foremost factors accountable for the expansion of 3D printing market include new and improved 3D printing technologies, wide range of materials (polymers, metals/alloys, sand, ceramics, living tissue), government funding, broad application scope, and increased awareness regarding the benefits of 3D printing over traditional techniques (injection molding and CNC machining).
However, APAC [Asian-Pacific] is the fastest growing and most promising market for 3D printing due to high industrial growth, technological awareness, supportive government policies, and financial investment by the governments in research and development. The major companies operating in this market are 3D Systems (U.S.), Stratasys (U.S.), Arcam AB (Sweden), ExOne (U.S.), and others.
MarketsandMarkets says the major driving factors for the 3D Printing Market are: ease in the manufacturing of low volume production of complex geometry components, and rapid manufacturing of customized products with regards to various applications such as aerospace, automotive, consumer and healthcare. In the report, different technologies such as stereolithography, laser sintering, electron beam melting, fused disposition modeling, and laminated object modeling are discussed. The materials market includes polymers and metals.