LAS VEGAS, CES 2013 – Let’s be honest: any moron can crap out an iPhone case. Sketch out a quick model in CAD, send a few emails to someone in Shenzhen, and just a couple weeks later, a buttload of cheap plastic iPhone cases will hit your door. The fact that it’s literally this easy to make an iPhone case is what makes reporting on iPhone cases just so tedious: they are literally a multi-billion dollar industry fueled by brain farts.
Which is why I like Sculpteo, and was charmed as they lead me through a demonstration of their service. Unlike most of the bozos at CES, they aren’t hiding the fact that any moron can crap out an iPhone case. In fact, that’s their whole business: they want you to be that moron.
The way Sculpteo works is dead easy. Basically, you download an app, and that allows you to design an iPhone or iPad case in a variety of ways: by specifying the case, the sections to carve out, the text to be added, or even the texture of the case.
One thing Sculpteo was showing off at CES Unveiled was their app’s new ability to make cases taken from a photograph of a subject’s profile. Just take a picture of, say, your girlfriend, upload it to Sculpteo, and you can get an iPhone case with your lover’s face neatly carved out in cameo-style profile on the side.
The app itself is easy to use and powerful, and frankly, I just like the ease of this. There are a lot of ways marketers dress them up, but secretly, everyone knows that iPhone cases are just dead simple to make. It’s great to see a company that gives you an app, lets you upload a design and then ships to you, two weeks later, a case to your specifications squirted out by the dolloping orifice of some 3D printer.
Sculpteo tries to dress all of this up with words like “bespoke” but it’s not necessary. We liked the look of Sculpteo, and the price seemed fair to us: $25, with two week turn-around time. We’ll let you know how they do by us when they send us the Goatse.cx case we drunkenly ordered on the showfloor.