A group of Kiwis are in the final stage of building the Boffles website, a global platform for hosting and downloading 3D design files.
As well as being a place to store and download 3D files, Boffles will be a comprehensive online community for 3D designers and home users.
The 'Boffles in Schools' programme is currently being developed, and the company says this will will help to introduce and educate schools, universities and home users about the opportunities of 3D printing.
In order to raise money to make the final improvements to the website and bring top designers on board, Boffles have launched a Kickstarter campaign which you can check out here.
The Boffles team says 3D printing is ‘surging in popularity’ and this is increasing the need for a file distribution network.
The team says 3D printers are becoming more popular and accessible for home users and the education market, with models now available between $500-$1,000 with the ability to produce home, kitchen and office supplies as well as tech gadgets, toys and models.
The global 3D printing industry is expected to grow from $3.8b in 2013 to $16.2b in 2018, with 3D printer sales to home consumers growing at a rate of 59% per year.
Boffles is hoping to tap into this market and provide a much needed service for quality 3D designs that can be printed at home.
Dane McMillan, Boffles co-founder and CEO, says, “There is a definite gap in the consumer market for quality 3D design files that are easily accessible and printable by your average consumer, not just tech driven early adopters.
“The 3D hardware market is growing at a rapid pace, but the evolution of software and printable designs for families, kids and your everyday consumer is lagging significantly.”
He says, “There is a growing appetite for this kind of service, a place where users can view and download a huge range of tested high-quality 3D files as well as access a significant knowledge base and learning centre on everything 3D.”
Eventually, the hope is Boffles will be the App Store equivalent in the home 3D market, McMillan says.