News

Amazon offers 3D printing to customize products

Amazon offers 3D printing to customize products

A box from Amazon.com is pictured on the porch of a house in Golden, Colorado. Photo: Reuters/Rick Wilking/Files

By Deepa Seetharaman

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc will offer 3D printing services that allow customers to customize and build earrings, bobble head toys and other items from third-party sellers using a new personalization option on its website.

Most of the more than 200 items available on the company’s new 3D printed products store, which launched on Monday, can be customized using a new feature that allows users to rotate and change the item they are viewing.

Before it is printed by one of Amazon’s sellers, users can customize a product like as a bobble head figure by changing its skin and eye color, hair style and outfit, Amazon said.

“The customization is something we’re keenly interested in,” said Petra Schindler-Carter, director for Amazon marketplace sales, speaking in an interview. “We’ll always look for new applications for that.”

Amazon, which has more than 240 million users, has expanded its marketplaces division to include new areas such as fine art and wine. It is part of Amazon’s larger investment into new areas like mobile services and original content that led to its larger-than-expected second-quarter loss last week.

The new printing option taps into a broader “Maker movement” among tech entrepreneurs in northern California, and to some extent Europe, that is focused on customizing 3D objects rather than development software or mobile applications.

3D printers have gained in popularity on Amazon Supply, a wholesale site for businesses. That interest led Amazon to offer customers an 3D print option, Schindler-Carter said.

(Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)

Recent Headlines

in Music

Mumford & Sons: No cell phones allowed

mumford

The British folk band has banned phones from a concert on Monday amid fears fans will record and leak their new material.

in Music

This week’s top alternative tracks

mumford

LISTEN: This week's top alternative songs, according to the weekly Billboard chart.

in Viral Videos

WATCH: Police officers get down with dashcam duets

24-overlay9

From "Fancy" to "Rude!" these cops know how to bust a move.

in Trending, Viral Videos

TODAY’S MUST SEE: Dancer, 102, sees her decades-old performances for the first time

24-overlay8

Alice Barker was a chorus line dancer during the Harlem Renaissance, and although she danced in numerous movies, commercials, and TV shows, she had never seen any of them until now.

in Music

Jack White honors the blues

jackwhite

The National Blues Museum in St. Louis got some six-figure support from the rocker.