3D printing technology may be some way off producing fully functional household appliances, but tiny steps are being made toward helping us out with our domestic duties. Hoover has teamed up with MakerBot to today unveil two designs for vacuum cleaner accessories, freely available to all through 3D printing marketplace Thingiverse.
Hoover claims that this announcement has been in the works for some time, with its team of designers involved in an ongoing brainstorm to conceive new tools that make the tedious task of sucking up dirt that little bit easier.
Kicking things off is a pair of attachments for its Air Cordless vacuum, a cleaning device that, as the name suggests, relies on a battery for power. The first mount is made to hold the extra lithium battery that comes with the vacuum, and the second is designed to serve as a mount for a flashlight, making those crumbs hiding in your home’s darker corners a tad easier to see.
The designs for both attachments can be downloaded from Thingiverse by any Air Cordless owner looking to spruce up their ride, or for that matter, anybody with a passion for 3D-printed vacuum cleaner accessories. As far as Hoover is concerned, the future is bright in this regard, promising to release another round of tools aimed at enhancing the cleaning experience this coming US spring.
Hoover joins other big-name companies that have become early adopters of 3D printing technology. Back in January, Hershey announced a partnership with printer manufacturer 3D Systems with a view to exploring the possibilities of 3D-printed chocolate. In July, Hasbro teamed up with Shapeways to allow fans to design and print figurines inspired by its My Little Pony line.
'3D printing at home will offer unique opportunities for brands like Hoover," says Paul Bagwell, Global Vice President of Product Development for Hoover. "We wanted to explore those opportunities early in the development of the technology. We are driven by innovation that meets consumers’ needs, and we are continually evaluating new technology that may help deliver this."