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14 Feb 2017

IDC Asia/Pacific Predicts 3D Printing Will Hit Mainstream Market in Asia Pacific in 2018

SINGAPORE, February 15th, 2016 – IDC has just unveiled its latest predictions for the 3D printing market titled IDC FutureScape: Worldwide 3D Printing Predictions – APeJ Implications and reveals that 3D printing will hit mainstream in Asia Pacific excluding Japan (APeJ) in 2018. This FutureScape report also highlights other key trends that will impact and shape the development of the APeJ 3D printing market in the next 1-3 years.

"The expiration of several key 3D printing patents in recent years has led to technological advancements. Applications for 3D printing will eventually extend beyond rapid prototyping in manufacturing and healthcare especially. Consumers are now more educated and will seek benefits of incorporating 3D printing into different areas," says Mun Chun Lim, Market Analyst of IDC’s Imaging, Printing and Document Solutions Research, IDC Asia/Pacific.

The rest of IDC Asia/Pacific’s predictions for 2017 and beyond include the following:

Prediction #1: Mainstream Market. By 2018, 3D Printing Will Be a Mainstream Technology Market with New Participation from Large and Established Document Printing, Contract Manufacturing, and Electronics Vendors.

With supportive government policies and continuous drive from countries like China, South Korea and India, IDC predicts that 3D printing will eventually become a mainstream market by 2018. "China will continue to be the frontrunner in 3D printing in the region. Manufacturers seeking ways of reducing dependency on traditional labor intensive processes in manufacturing will eventually see 3D printing play a major role in coming years and eventually become mainstream. Print service providers will continue to emerge and play an important role in the market offering complete 3D printing solutions and serving as a platform to pave the way for the exposure and adoption of 3D printing" said Mun Chun Lim, Market Analyst of IDC’s Imaging, Printing and Document Solutions research.

Prediction #2: Right-Sized. By 2018, There Will Be 30% Fewer 3D Printer Companies in the Market than There Are in Today’s Market.

3D printing market has seen growth in merger and acquisition activities in APeJ and IDC predicts that the activities will continue to increase in the coming years but there will be 30% fewer 3D printer companies in the market in 2018 than there is in today. "Consolidation is a good sign that an industry is maturing, established companies will continuously adopt new technologies by acquiring specialized and potential company in the market to provide differentiation and value proposition to the market," says Lim.

Prediction #7: Exoskeletons. By 2018, the Use of 3D Printing to Produce Customized Exoskeletons (Enabling Paraplegics to Walk, Augment Humans, etc.) Will Transition from Research to Commercial Industries.

The medical sector is poised to have the strongest growth in APEJ with positive encouragement from the government on the compatibility and acceptance of 3D printing incorporated into the medical sector. IDC predicts that in the medical sector, the use of 3D printing to produce customized exoskeletons in APEJ region will eventually take place at the same pace as worldwide in 2018. "High cost involvement, homogenous design and high recurring maintenance cost has seen low penetration of traditional functional exoskeletons in this region. But with 3D printing, it has enabled a new dimension on producing affordable, functional, customizable prosthetic hand and arms as compared to the traditional way of produce," added Lim.

IDC’s top 10 3D printing predictions are presented in full in the following reports: IDC FutureScape: Worldwide 3D Printing Predictions – APeJ Implications and IDC FutureScape: Worldwide 3D Printing Predictions. To learn more about the IDC FutureScape series, a hallmark of IDC's offerings, please visit:

For sales inquiries on an IDC FutureScapes document, please contact your IDC account manager or Sheryl Fuertez at For media inquiries, please contact Tessa Rago or Alvin Afuang

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About FutureScapes

IDC FutureScapes are used to shape IT strategy and planning for the enterprise by providing a basic framework for evaluating IT initiatives in terms of their value to business strategy now and in the foreseeable future. IDC's FutureScapes are comprised of a set of decision imperatives designed to identify a range of pending issues that CIOs and senior technology professionals will confront within the typical 3-year business planning cycle.

About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. With more than 1,100 analysts worldwide, IDC offers global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. IDC's analysis and insight helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based technology decisions and to achieve their key business objectives. Founded in 1964, IDC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of International Data Group (IDG), the world's leading media, data and marketing services company. To learn more about IDC, please visit Follow IDC on Twitter at @IDC.

Regions Covered

Asia Pacific

Topics Covered

3D Printer, Print services

For more information, contact:

Mun Chun Lim
+603 7663 2104

Maggie Tan
+603 7663 2112

Alvin Afuang
+63917 7974586

Theresa Rago
+65 91593053