3D Systems hits out at Formlabs over patents

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Despite having made it to production, both Formlabs and Kickstarter face a law suit from 3D Systems

3D Systems has announced that it has brought an intellectual property law suit against new printer company Formlabs and its funding site Kickstarter.

3D Systems is well within its rights to protect its patents relating to the stereolithography process, but when a company that has spent hundreds of millions of dollars in the past year buying up tech takes on the new boys from a Kickstarter-funded start-up it has a whiff of a David vs Goliath matchup.

Its not likely to earn them any support from the Maker and SME communities, where the Formlabs high definition Form1 printer has been much anticipated.
With the big guns looking to bump a competitor product out of the arena it is not looking great for anyone trying to develop new machines, or the variety of low-cost choices available for consumers.

Right now it appears that the expensive method of developing your own standalone processes and technology, without guarantee of success, is the only way to avoid legal complications.

Yet without new competition pushing the industry from its base are we already reaching a plateau before the ‘3D printing revolution’ has had time to fully take off?

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