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Amazon’s App Store for the Physical World

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Technologists love talking about the future and its “Internet of Things,” or the increasing interaction between the physical and cyber worlds. With the introduction of wearables, flyables, driveables, and even eatables, the convergence of physical and cyber systems has never been more pronounced. And with major retailers like Amazon joining the fray, the Internet of Things has never been more mainstream.

In a press release dated July 28th, Amazon announced the launch of a 3D printer store that will provide customers with hundreds of printed products, many of them customizable by color, material, size, and style. The store will feature templates that customers can build upon to develop personalized products tailored to individuals’ styles and preferences. The printed products are also quite affordable, as many of them cost fewer than $100.

The new store demonstrates some of the possibilities that modern technology provides to both retailers and consumers. “The introduction of our 3D Printed Products store suggests the beginnings of a shit in online retail – that manufacturing can be more nimble to provide an immersive customer experience,” said Petra Schindler-Carter, the Director for Amazon Marketplace Sales. Indeed, some buyers may simply be attracted to the fun of designing a unique 3D object.

Amazon’s new service hastens the arrival of the Internet of Things. Now anyone with an Amazon account can own products created by 3D printers, which have yet to become typical household appliances. “A product personalization platform on Amazon has the potential to become the app store for the physical world,” said Nancy Liang, co-founder of Mixee Labs.

We likely will not have to wait long to see creative and innovative products created with the store at Amazon.com. The service is the latest and one of the most exciting developments for the Internet of Things.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley writes on enterprise IT. He is a founder of Crucial Point and publisher of CTOvision.com

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