Mar 21, 2016 | By Kira

Pley, an online toy rental company that has been called the ‘Netflix for toys’ due to its massive toy library and monthly-subscription model, has announced plans to expand its physical toy rental service by allowing families to rent 3D printers, stream exclusive 3D models, and 3D print unique toys directly in their homes.

Anyone who has ever had to buy a gift for a child knows the dilemma: there is an almost infinite range of kids toys to choose from, each cooler-looking than the last, and more often than not, more expensive than anything you could even imagine owning at that age. Yet even if you do manage to snag the toy they’ve been eyeing, instantly becoming your child’s hero, it never lasts. Even the coolest toy, you know, the one your kids begged and pleaded for, saved their own allowance for, and constantly reminded you that all of their lucky friends already own—yes, even that toy—will eventually be forgotten and left to collect dust as newer, cooler models roll in.

Hoping to help parents save money, reduce clutter, conserve the environment and, above all, keep their kids happily playing, Pley came up with an innovative monthly toy-rental service. For just $9.99, members can choose from over 500 in-demand brands and toys, including LEGO, preschool toys, Star Wars sets, and even RC cars or kid-friendly drones, and have them delivered straight to their door. Once kids have had their fill, the toys are simply returned and exchanged for new ones. It’s like Christmas everyday—without the stress and or insane bills.

It’s a brilliant model, benefiting parents, kids, and the environment all in one shot—yet by leveraging the maker movement and recent advances in 3D printing technology, Pley is now seeking to push the Future of Play to the next level.

Pley’s new service will see kid-friendly 3D printers as well as stream-able 3D models added to its rental catalogue. Families will thus be able to download their kids’ most desired toys, modify them, and actually 3D print them in their own home. When they’re finished, the 3D printers can be easily returned, yet kids will get to keep their 3D printed toys—as well as the 3D printing experience—forever.

“Pley democratizes the toy selection and creation, taking the toy industry from its current guess-based, adult-centric design process to a more consumer-driven design. Adding 3D printers to our rental catalogue and streaming toy designs is a natural next step in our mission to provide children access to the best educational toys,” explained Ranan Lachman, Co-founder and CEO of Pley.

Over 1,000 3D printable toy designs will be streamed to members through Pley’s new service. The toy designs themselves come from Pleyworld, a crowdsourcing platform for toy creations launched in 2015. Through Pleyworld, children can design and submit their own toy creations and vote for the ones they like most. Once a design gets 5,000 votes, it is converted into a 3D printable file and made available for streaming. Pley will also be physically manufacturing the most popular toy designs for families who do not yet have a 3D printer or are not interested in renting one.

“Our goal is to inspire and develop children to think creatively and release their potential by creating their own toys. Kids are significantly more creative than adults, so why do we keep buying them toys designed by adults? At Pley, we believe that children should create their own toys,” continued Lachman.

“We are excited about the recent advances in 3D printing that allow us to rent 3D printers and let customers print their own toys at home. We plan to stream to our customers a catalogue of 1,000 toy designs so children can print their favorite toys and design their own using our software.“

3D printed Hex Connector OGOBILD toy attachments

The true beauty of Pley is that it keeps kids engaged and entertained while saving money and toy waste. The added dimension of 3D printer rentals and 3D model streaming, however, is also a great way to introduce children and their families to the potentials of 3D printing without forcing them to purchase an entire machine.

Pley has not yet revealed the monthly fee for its 3D printer rental service, however some OGOBILD 3D printed toy attachments are already available in their online toy library. From funky, googly-eyed characters to connectable hex blocks to whatever your child can imagine, the future of play is here, and it will be 3D printed.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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Maggie H. wrote at 4/13/2016 4:52:05 PM:

This is so cool! I love when you can teach the kids about new technologies while playing! We recently bought the 3D printed kids car from MQB. It took us quite a while to build it but the kids just love it! We'll definitely also try Pley!

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