MakerBot prints the future at CES 2014Bre Pettis, CEO of MakerBot, talks to Donald Bell and Bridget Carey about a new line of 3D printers and a new universe of printable objects.
-Welcome back, Bree Pettis from MakerBot. -Always a pleasure to be here. -All right. And this is your first year I believe doing like a formal press conference press conference-- -Yes. -For your products. -Yes. It's one of those things where, you know, we've been here. This is our 5th year here so it's great to be back. -Yes. -And we dropped a lot of new stuff so we wanted to have a press conference so that we could show it all off and really show people the whole ecosystem we're presenting. -All right. So tell me about the products that you showed. I know. We covered the press conference but just a recap. -So you've got the MakerBot Replicator Mini. -Yes. -This is the consumer 3D printer that we were presenting and it's nice and tidy but it's no compromise. It's got a professional, you know, MakerBot Smart Extruder. It's networked. It's a very powerful machine in a tidy little package. -Would you call that the starter for people who don't have a 3D printer already? -Yes. This would be a great place to start getting into 3D printing-- -Okay. -And exploring the frontier. Then we've got the MakerBot Replicator Desktop and this 3D printer is for the prosumer. This is the machine that when we announced it onstage Lockheed Martin immediately called up and said we need these for our engineers. -Right. Like the Replicator brand has been around for a while but this is the latest generation of it, right? -That's correct. And-- -So for people who want a larger print volume they wanna be able to do a little more stuff get a little bit more product out of what they're printing. -And it's networked as well so you can either plug a USB stick into the front or you can connect it to an Ethernet cable or connect it via USB or you can even connect wirelessly so you can connect with your phone, and actually all of the machines we're presenting have camera on the inside of them. So-- -And that's a new feature, right? -Yes. -Previously you didn't have those so you can actually keep an eye on what you're printing. -Yes. You go get a cup of tea in there and you're like oh. You know it'll send you a message. You know come and get your 3D model. It's done. And that makes it also easy to share on social networks like the Thingiverse, Twitter or Facebook. -Because I would imagine that's probably the thing that when you're just starting out is the hardest thing to get around is the patience because like you have to be pretty patient for your object to come into the world, right? -Yes. I mean it does have the effect of like a, you know, a gold fish bowl and your kitten kind of-- it's spellbinding watching, you know, your idea come to life right in front of you. -Right. -You know one of the big things that when we talked about 3D printing people will go well what do I need it for. I think this year you kind of really showed what a consumer can get out of it with these toys that you can print. Can you tell us about the app store and how it works with like all the toys? -So besides 3D machines and there's one more. We launched a ginormous -Oh, yes with the basket. -MakerBot Replicator Z18, that, but you're absolutely right. We decided we were gonna just instead of waiting for people to cross the chasm to us and to figuring out, you know, we get a lot of like well, what am I gonna get into 3D printing? Well, you know what? We're just gonna make you the coolest stuff so you wanna make it and we made a bunch of 6 different collections of collectibles and so like this one here this is a Chunky Truck and we made a whole line of whole construction set that you can make. -So you just go online and pick the toys you want or pick the whole set and like how much do they cost? -They start at 99 cents for each one and then $9.99 for the whole album or collection. -Yes. -And, you know, my daughter is already like I want the pets. I'm like okay. So it's one of those things where we made it easy and then we made content so that you know we realize like we kind of made the guitars of rock and roll, the rock and roller but these are sort of like the guitars. We had to make the music so that people wanted to play music. -Sure. -So. -But on the other hand though, you are having people still submit their ideas. There's still that open community of people are submitting their products there that other people can take and refine or print out themselves. Is that what this guy is or is this-- -Yes. -He has a claw. What's the claw? -So this is Epic so our website Thingiverse which is a community of creative people, that people share their designs and this is a prosthetic hand for kids. So normally prosthetic hands cost like tens of thousands of dollars. When you have a MakerBot this cost like $5 and kids grow out of them like sneakers. So they usually don't get them. -Right. -But the community came up with this project, shared it, and now it's been downloaded more than 50,000 times and you know I've talked with kids who are born with amniotic band syndrome without any fingers and they went to their school, this one kid, Leon, went to his school, made a robo hand on the MakerBot at school-- -Wow. -And he's used it to catch touchdowns. So it's one of those things where it's not just for, you know, Knick Knacks. This is used for things that make a real difference in people's lives. -Right. I can imagine with these smaller parts that are involved in this, you could probably get away with printing this on one of the Mini, right? -It's made to be made on all the 3D printers we're launching. -That's really great and so the pricing is the other interesting fact here on the Mini. You've actually brought the price down to the lowest price yet for the entry-level consumer, right? -Yes. This is $1375. This one's $2899 and the ginormous one is $6499. -Right. -So when you look at the build volume, the features that you get, it's an amazing package. We also launched-- I should mention we launched 3 new applications. So it's not just here's 3, you know, 3D printers. We made it easy for people to connect on their mobile device. We made a creative tool called MakerBot PrintShop that's for the iPad and then we got the MakerBot Desktop app where you can browse Thingiverse in the new digital store. -That was in also earlier. It was earlier this year that you guys talked about the laser scanner like wasn't that another announcement relatively recently? -That's another part of the whole MakerBot 3D Printer System and the MakerBot Digitizer is a desktop 3D scanner and it, you know, a MakerBot 3D printer takes digital designs and makes them physical. -Right. -The MakerBot Digitizer takes physical things and makes them digital so you can modify them. You can grab the gnome out of your front yard, scan it and add more beard. -That's great. Well, Bree, thanks so much for joining us here and showing off the MakerBot. So anyone here at CES is encouraged to head over to the MakerBot booth and see what these things can really do. We've got more for you here at the CNET stage so don't go anywhere. There's a lot more happening today. Dan Ackerman is gonna be back here with the next wave of the newest laptops here at CES. And at 11 am check back here because I'm gonna be launching a brand new show called The Fix. That and a whole lot more happening right now so stay tuned.