Here's a surprise from the CES show floor, the kind that stopped me in my tracks. It's a 3D printer. A 3D printer from Polaroid. The once-ubiquitous maker of instant film cameras has smacked its brand on a really, really big 3D printer manufactured with its partner, U.K. inkjet cartridge manufacturer Environmental Business Products (EBP).
Well, more than it's brand. This is easily the most Polaroid-looking 3D printer of all time, with those bright rainbow stripes running across the front of the machine, between two viewing windows.
And it turns out the Polaroid ModelSmart 250S is actually an interesting machine. It steps out from the standard Rep-Rap lineage, fitting somewhere between consumer and industrial, which is to say it's really, really big, but utilizes the sort of extrusion technology you'll find in desktop machines from companies like MakerBot.
There are some interesting features on-board, as well, namely autocalibration and a Wi-Fi-enabled camera, so users can monitor what's going on inside via a smartphone. The Polaroid branding also is on the spools of PLA plastic filament the printer utilizes. It will be available in European markets this year.