Mattel ThingMaker 3D Printer

As children, we waited for 3D printers for an excruciatingly long time. But better late than never. The Mattel ThingMaker 3D Printer has numerous advantages over other hobbyist 3D printers, notably that it’s affordable and crazy easy to use, both benefits of being a mass produced toy primarily suited to kids. Use the accompanying ThingMaker Design app (already available for download) on an Android or iOS tablet or smartphone to customize your own figurines and parts from templates or from scratch, then send them over wirelessly for printing using run-of-the-mill plastic PLA filament. Since it’s made for children several safety features come standard, including an automated lock that secures the door shut when in use and a retractible print head to keep the hot metal tip out of reach of fingers, though to be honest the “kids” who’ll really be using it likely know better than to stick their hands where they don’t belong. Here’s hoping it gets hacked quickly.

Arriving in fall of this year. Preorder at Amazon – $300