"The dream here is definitely that you take something and install it as fast as the fastest plug-and-play device that you've ever seen and you're focused on the end result," Michael Armani, M3D's CEO tells us. "You take the design, put it in the printer, it prints as quickly as possible. The focus here isn't on the 3D printing process ... [it's] on 'yeah, I want to make a mold for chocolates.' It went to the fun part so you can enjoy it as much as possible."
The Micro itself is, well, cute. It looks soft, finished and, perhaps most importantly, unobtrusive; it isn't a stretch to say that some of its color schemes make the printer resemble the Weighted Companion Cube from Portal. The Micro doesn't come off like an Erector set project, it looks like a gadget. That was no accident.
"Mike fought really hard for that," president and co-founder David Jones says. "If it were up to me, it would've been ugly, but it would've worked really well." Armani is quick to offer a counter-point. "If it were up to me, it would've looked amazing but it wouldn't have worked as well."
What struck us most during our conversation with Micro's team was how passionate and committed it is to delivering a hassle-free experience to the consumer from start to finish. If the staggering successes of its lower-priced (but more complicated and less functional) competition are any indication, M3D could have a massive hit on its hands.
"We hope to hold the position as the premiere consumer 3D printer that's accessible, easy to use and that you can set on your desk," Armani says. "When you combine all of that into one user experience, it'll hold a pretty key place in the market space."
by Timothy J. Seppala