Nokia to support 3D printing for its phone cases

By Sooraj Shah
18 Jan 2013 View Comments
Nokia Lumia 820 screen

Nokia will release files containing 3D templates, phone case specifications, recommended materials and best practices in a bid to support 3D printing of its phone cases.

The firm claims it will become the first big telecoms company to back the idea of 3D printing. 3D printing is already used in many different fields including the automotive and industrial design industries.

Further reading

3D printing takes digital input from three-dimensional data files to create a solid 3D model through an additive, layer by layer process.

In a blog post, John Kneeland, a Nokia community and developer marketing manager, explained that the Lumia 820 has removable phone cases and that a 3D printing development kit will help users to make and customise their own cases for the phone.

The documents are already available on Nokia's website, for registered users to access.

Kneeland said that Nokia uses 3D printing internally to help with rapid prototyping, and in the future he hopes for "wildly more modular and customizable phones" by using the technology.

"We could sell some kind of phone template, and entrepreneurs the world over could build a local business on building phones precisely tailored to the needs of his or her local community," he suggested.

"You want a waterproof, glow-in-the-dark phone with a bottle-opener and a solar charger? Someone can build it for you - or you can print it yourself," he added.

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