OLO, the 3D Printer Powered by Your Smartphone Screen

You probably already have half the equipment in your pocket.

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Tech
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3D printers are known to be relatively cumbersome devices, ranging from Easy-Bake Oven through to NYC apartments in size. The OLO, however, could potentially be one of the most portable and innovative applications of 3D printing technology yet, as it is powered by little else than the light of a smartphone screen. Simply fill the device with any of the product’s many-hued liquid resin options and leave it to sit on overnight and, voila, by morning you could have a model car or maybe a translucent amber T-rex skull. The project’s Kickstarter pitch video also makes note of a gift-messaging feature that allows users to send each other objects that can only be revealed by printing them. Users can then thank their long-distance partners with emoji and underwritten text messages, for a truly hypermodern romantic exchange.

Now admittedly, the overnight time-lapse seems suspicious, as conventionally-sized and -powered 3D printers often take hours—if not days—to complete intricate projects. The OLO does boast compatibility with a slew of 3D apps and a gallery of pre-rendered objects, much like a tattoo shop’s free tattoo options on Friday the 13th, but one wonders how long it would realistically take for a smartphone screen to cook up a dozen miniature Totally-Not-Mario figurines.

Check out the OLO’s pitch above and head on over to its Kickstarter page for more info—so far, the project has massively overshot its initial pledge of $80,000, earning $1.8M in backing with over two weeks to go, as of this writing. And make sure to let us know what you think of the project in the comments below.

 

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