Discover the top technology trends for holiday 2014 and beyond

(BPT) – It’s shaping up to be a high-tech holiday this year, with more money being spent than ever before on consumer electronics gifts like tablets and phones, according to the Consumer Electronics Association. People are anxious to learn about new technologies and are shopping for the perfect presents to put under the tree. Are you one of them?

CEA reports there is a ‘strong appetite’ for emerging technologies, such as smart wearable devices and smart devices for the home. One new technology trend that you may have heard about – even if you haven’t seen it – is 3-D printing.  A recent Intel survey found that people are interested in new technologies like this one, but many become frustrated when they can’t get their hands on it. In fact, 79 percent of Americans are excited about the chance to learn and try out new technologies, but half are frustrated by the lack of access to them, beyond what they read and see on TV, the survey revealed.

Fortunately, there will be more opportunities to experience new technologies in a hands-on environment this holiday season and throughout 2015. The Intel Experience in Best Buy stores allows shoppers to try the hottest technologies they have been craving. The zones currently feature four experiences for visitors, including the 3-D Printing Experience. Here, using custom software on Intel-powered 2 in 1 devices, you can design objects such as your own 3-D model of a robot and experience featured robot designs in the stores.

The 3-D experience has proven to be a very popular part of the Intel Experience zones. This is no surprise, of course, as interest in the technology continues to grow. Forbes estimates the 3-D printing industry will reach $ 3.1 billion worldwide revenues by 2016, and ZDNet reports 60 percent of enterprises are using or evaluating 3-D printing currently. But 3-D printing isn’t just for big business, as consumers are discovering that making custom 3-D designs is fun for adults and children alike. There is virtually no limit to what you can imagine and create.

Advanced 3-D printing will become increasingly accessible in 2015 and beyond for the average person. These printers work by taking three-dimensional designs and printing them layer by layer in a variety of materials. From complex machine parts and medical devices to toys and home decor, 3-D printing makes it easier for people to turn a vision into reality. Plus, because the cost of printers from companies such as 3D Systems has decreased significantly – starting around $ 1,000 – more people will soon have these devices in their homes and businesses.

For those who already have access to 3-D printing, creating custom DIY holiday gifts is simple. Vases, jewelry, mugs and personalized accessories are all popular options. Experience the possibilities of 3-D printing for yourself when you visit, where you can find an Intel Experience near you.

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