More and more companies are turning to 3D printing to give their businesses a "significant" competitive advantage. According to a survey published in the 2019 edition of "The State of 3D Printing," additive manufacturing has taken on a bigger role in their business strategies, and nearly half of those polled say it has given them a distinct competitive advantage. Another 55% indicate that 3D printing is one of their strengths, and because they have adopted the technology, they are staying ahead of the competition.
Metal 3D printing continues to play a key role in driving innovation within the MedTech industry. The process has three primary advantages over traditional manufacturing techniques:
- Mass Customization
- Lower Cost in Low Volumes
- Design Flexibility and Freedom
The U.S. medical device industry is considered by many to be one of the country’s most innovative business sectors. Not surprisingly, due to the nature of medical devices and the critical issues they address, it is also one of the most highly regulated.
Manufacturers are making headway in mass customization thanks to lean manufacturing, just-in-time inventory, and digital technologies like additive manufacturing.
Customizable consumer products can create production choke points in traditional manufacturing models. Additive manufacturing is one way to “unchoke” production for mass customization.
Additive manufacturing (aka 3D printing) has a singular, strategic advantage in the medical device market: personalization.
The terms ‘mass customization’ and ‘mass personalization’ are often used interchangeably, but there are important differences.
In honor of spooky Halloween, let’s talk about body parts.
More specifically, how we can use a common body part – the human ear – to highlight the differences between mass customization and mass personalization in manufacturing.