Like many PC manufacturers HP has been struggling in recent years. As consumers began to embrace portable computing devices such as smartphones and tablets, PC makers have seen sales of desktop and notebook PCs dwindle.
When HP's mobile device initiatives failed to have a significant impact on sales the company put its focus on the enterprise solutions market and big data. This led to the purchase of both EDS and Autonomy, companies that would eventually cost HP billions in lost revenue.
Now HP is looking toward the future and has a plan to revive its printing business. The company recently announced that it is developing a 3D printing platform called the HP Multi Jet Fusion. The technology is part of HP's "Blended Reality ecosystem," which also includes an "immersive computing platform" named Sprout.
"We are on the cusp of a transformative era in computing and printing," said Dion Weisler, EVP for Printing & Personal Systems at HP. "Our ability to deliver Blended Reality technologies will reduce the barriers between the digital and physical worlds, enabling us to express ourselves at the speed of thought - without filters, without limitations. This ecosystem opens up new market categories that can define the future, empowering people to create, interact, and inspire like never before."
— HP (@HP) October 29, 2014
HP stated that it is committed to developing a 3D printing platform that will become an industry standard. It hopes to do this by improving on the speed and quality of current 3D printers while also reducing costs.
The Multi Jet Fusion's rollout will involve HP working with its current 3D printing customers to improve the device. The company will focus primarily on commercial 3D printing applications and expects to distribute its new platform more widely starting in 2016.
"As we examined the existing 3D print market, we saw a great deal of potential but also saw major gaps in the combination of speed, quality, and cost," said Stephen Nigro, SVP of Inkjet and Graphic Solutions at HP. "HP Multi Jet Fusion is designed to transform manufacturing across industries by delivering on the full potential of 3D printing with better quality, increased productivity, and break-through economics."