Move aside Roomba, Dyson and Henry — Hoover is back and it
wants to reclaim its place among the top three hippest vacuum
brands. It plans to do this through a new partnership with MakerBot, which will allow
anyone to 3D print
accessories for their Hoover.
Once upon a time Hoover was the most innovative vacuum brand
around. There is reason, after all, that along with Tannoy,
Sellotape and Trampoline it has become a genericised trademark.
Having lost its sparkle more recently in the face of vacuums with
faces and autonomous robot vacuums, it is staging a 3D-printed
“3D printing at home will offer unique opportunities for brands
like Hoover,” says the company’s global VP of product development
Paul Bagwell. “We wanted to explore those opportunities early in
the development of the technology.”
Designs for Hoover accessories are now available to access free
on Thingiverse, allowing anyone with access to a 3D printer to
print out extra bits on demand.
The first two designs in the pilot programme are both for the
Hoover Air Cordless. One accessory will allow keen cleaner beans to
create a snap-on battery mount to carry the extra LithiumLife
battery that comes with the Air Cordless, so that it is always
there in case of emergencies. The second accessory comes in the
form of a torch holder, which clips onto the end of the Hoover’s
extension wand in order to allow the most house proud to clean
thoroughly under sofas and in dark corners.
This is just the first wave of Hoover bits and bobs, with the
company promising more accessories in spring 2015.
Update 23.12.14: Hoover has been in touch to clarify that
the accessories will only work with Hoover USA products.