Not too long ago, break-through innovation in three dimensional (3D) printing technology was realised and this technology has subsequently had a transformative effect on industries from manufacturing to architecture to medical. Fast-forward a few years and the latest developments in the field of 3D printing are now enabling companies to accelerate and simplify new product development processes via end-to-end early prototyping solutions, from 3D modelling of product packaging to 3D printing of early product prototypes for consumer evaluation.
The new 3D technology, which can transform simple images or hand-drawn sketches of new product designs into 3D models within a matter of hours, provides faster and better-quality insights on consumers’ reactions to new product design than traditional approaches, addressing areas such as design and sensory appeal, sizing and whether the product meets value-for-money expectations.
This advancement is pivotal for the product development process since it addresses challenges previously faced in effectively conveying product illustrations or conceptual ideas to consumers. In contrast, 3D printing enables consumers to touch and feel tangible ideas and objects, leaving less to the consumer’s imagination and gaining more accurate and insightful reactions.
While the traditional new product development process is lengthy, incredibly expensive and fraught with risk, 3D printing is delivering a viable and cost-effective alternative to traditional prototyping and, moving forward, it will play a significant role in the qualification of new products with consumers.
Via an exclusive collaboration, Nielsen is working with Singapore-based 3D printing company, 3D Matters, to help a broad range of companies fine-tune their product development and package design, streamline the prototyping process and facilitate more-informed decisions around product innovation.