Today, MakerBot quietly announced that they’ll be opening ‘mini-stores’ (similar to the mini-Apple Stores within Best Buy locations) at Microsoft retail stores featuring a full-on ‘MakerBot Experience’. Prior to this announcement, the only way to get the ‘MakerBot Experience’ was to attend a MakerFaire, go to a 3D printing industry event, attend a school or know somebody who owns a MakerBot, or swing by the MakerBot retail store in NYC. Could this be the last tip over the edge before 3D printing goes true-mainstream?

MakerBot Mini-Stores

According to the announcement made today, “Microsoft® retail stores across the country will offer a “MakerBot Experience” and the chance for customers to see 3D printing in action as well as purchase a MakerBot Replicator® 2 Desktop 3D Printer and MakerBot PLA Filament right in the store.”

Now that’s pretty huge. The step from online ordering to in-store purchasing is a big leap for a company like MakerBot. Considering that most people who are curious about 3D printing would want to see a final printed object up-close, this expansion allows dozens if not hundreds of new markets to sample a taste of 3D printing in real-time. At this time, the Microsoft retail stores will be the only full line stores outside of MakerBot’s own NYC store where you can purchase a Replicator 2 Desktop 3D Printer in person and take it home the same day. Additionally, it will be the instant-gratification refill station of choice for all those new Replicator 2 owners who need that extra roll of filament:


Currently, the MakerBot Experience can be seen at the following Microsoft retail stores in the U.S.:

  • Scottsdale, AZ – Fashion Square
  • Costa Mesa, CA – South Coast Plaza
  • Mission Viejo, CA – The Shops at Mission Viejo
  • Palo Alto, CA – Stanford Shopping Center
  • San Diego, CA – Fashion Valley
  • San Francisco, CA – Westfield San Francisco Centre
  • Lone Tree, CO – Park Meadows Mall
  • Danbury, CT – Danbury Fair Mall
  • Atlanta, GA – Lenox Square
  • Oak Brook, IL – Oakbrook Center
  • Schaumburg, IL – Woodfield Mall
  • Bloomington, MN – Mall of America
  • Salem, NH – The Mall at Rockingham Park
  • Bridgewater, NJ – Bridgewater Commons
  • White Plains, NY – The Westchester
  • Houston, TX – Houston Galleria
  • McLean, VA – Tysons Corner Center
  • Bellevue, WA – Bellevue Square

(Images via MakerBot)


Simon is a Brooklyn-based industrial designer and Managing Editor of EVD Media. When he finds the time to design, his focus is on helping startups develop branding and design solutions to realize their product design vision. In addition to his work at Nike and various other clients, he is the main reason anything gets done at EvD Media. He once wrestled an Alaskan alligator buzzard to the ground with his bare hands… to rescue Josh.