TIME Magazine is one of world’s most influential news publications. If something gets listed there, that definitely carries lot of weight. In one edition of TIME magazine about world’s most influential tech gadgets, 3D printing got a mention. Makerbot, most spoken about desktop 3D printer brand got a mention in TIME magazine in 49th position of 50 list of most influential gadgets of all time.
MakerBot entered the 3D printing industry around 2010 as one of the first mainstream manufacturers of consumer 3D printers and an advocate of the Open Source Hardware Movement. Within just few years, the company was acquired by industry giant Stratasys. The company seemed invincible with all the PR and brand it gained except for its own mis-steps such as launching a faculty line of 3D printers and extruders and patenting few ideas against its initial ethos of Open Source movement. Its brand took a huge beating due to these missteps. MakerBot has shut down all retail locations, laid off 20 percent of its staff, downsized its Brooklyn manufacturing space, and finally outsourced its manufacturing once and for all.
But that didn’t stop this brand from being listed as most influential tech gadgets. It is because of the timing and the mind share it captured. This brand made the whole industry a household name in USA. Moreover, it has had a significant presence in high schools and universities across the country, introducing the next generation of engineers and scientists to the maker movement and propelling further research, development, and consumer interest.