Can it capitalize on its metal, plastic and color capabilities?
HP’s mission is to expand its revenue sources and to this end has invested in multiple markets over the last 18 months, including the 3D printing market. Already in plastics 3D printing, HP is also entering the metals and color 3D printing markets.
HP must determine how 3D printing, among its multiple capabilities, fits into its strategy to enable the digital transformation of manufacturing. By doing so HP could carve out a leadership position for the company and drive 3D printing beyond a niche market. HP leverages over 5,000 patents from its 2D printing portfolio to help drive its 3D printing business where it already has more than 600 3D print patents and pending patent applications.
In May 2016, HP Inc. launched its Multi Jet Fusion (MJF) 3D printer, one of the first additive manufacturing systems from a recognized 2D printer brand. Since it came to market in May 2017 nearly 50 customers (including two with repeat, multi-unit orders) are using HP’s 3D printers. Major manufacturers and consumer brands including BMW, Flextronics, Johnson & Johnson, and Nike are innovating with the devices.
I have been extremely impressed with the vibrant colors of prototype color MJF parts that I have handled over the past four years, enough so that I recommended HP speed up development on several occasions. HP plans to announce a lower priced, full color 3D printer capable of mechanically functional parts in 2018.
Early Color MJF Print Samples (2014)
HP plans to announce its metal 3D printing technology platform and business plan in 2018 and is already producing metal parts in the labs. I got wind of its metal 3D printing initiative in September. Metal, plastics and color will greatly increase HP’s ability to bring digital transformation to the $12 trillion manufacturing sector in the coming years.
3D printing has great potential. Total spending is predicted to grow at a 66.5% CAGR to $17.7 billion in 2020 (see “Forecast: 3D Printers, Worldwide, 2016”), with over 6.5 million printer sales.
The Multi Jet Fusion 3D Printer is a variation of “powder bed fusion” which is predicted to grow at a 46.1% CAGR from 2015 to 2020. Powder bed fusion is well-suited to aerospace, automotive, consumer goods, defense, healthcare and manufacturing industries.
Gartner predicts that, by 2020, 75% of manufacturing operations worldwide will use 3D-printed tools, jigs and fixtures made in-house or by a service bureau to produce finished goods. Also, 3D printing will reduce new product introduction timelines by 25%.
However, within the next two to three years, revenue contribution from its 3D printers will be too small to make a significant impact on HP’s overall business. The company must not only introduce new 3D printers but also build upon adjacent opportunities such as professional services, service delivery and applications.
This blog post includes excerpts from Gartner’s recent strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats research report SWOT: HP Inc., Devices and Printer/Imaging, Worldwide.
Read Complimentary Relevant Research
100 Data and Analytics Predictions Through 2021
Over the next few years, data and analytics programs will become even more mission-critical throughout the business and across industries....
View Relevant Webinars
Data Center Modernization and Infrastructure Agility Trends
IT infrastructure professionals must plan for business transformation by leveraging modern data center technologies such as flash-based...
Category: 3d-printing additive-manufacturing advanced-manufacturing trends-predictions
Tags: 3d-print 3d-printer additive-manufacturing bmw digital-press digital-printer digital-printing flextronics hp inkjet johnson-johnson multi-jet-fusion nike swot
Comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management. Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes, with attribution to Gartner. This content may not be used for any other purposes in any other formats or media. The content on this blog is provided on an "as-is" basis. Gartner shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or use of this blog.