Since Charles Hull invented a 3D printing process called Stereolithography, also known as SLA, in 1984, additive manufacturing has progressed lots. Back then 3D printing was sort of frowned upon, people did not really understand what it was or how it worked. Nowadays, this is obviously entirely different. Many companies use it, while individuals use it as well. For some people 3D printing even is a hobby or a passion. It is a fun process to use after all, so this definitely does make sense. Besides that, you can use additive manufacturing for many different applications.
3D printing is already used in the entertainment sector. In some of the biggest movies you can see the applications of additive manufacturing. Props that can be seen on screen are for example made with the help of a 3D printer. Besides that, toys and action figures can also be created by using such a machine.
The medical industry has been using 3D printer for quite a long time now. In the late 90s additive manufacturing was already employed in order to create fully functional human organs, although this was not easy at all. There are still some steps to be taken until transplant organs can be printed easily, but it probably will not take too long anymore.
The education sector can also make use of 3D printing. It is a great method for geometry visualizations, for example. Furthermore, art schools can use these printers in order to actually create and build design concepts. On top of that, additive manufacturing can be an excellent tool for research purposes.
Some architects may still be using their hands to create models of the buildings they have designed. This is silly, it is much better to use a 3D printer. Obviously a big part of this industry already utilizes additive manufacturing. They do this for design review, reverse structure engineering, and many other applications.
Of course, the manufacturing sector can employ 3D printing as well. The companies in this industry can do it for many different purposes. This includes developing models of products before they will be manufactured on a mass scale. These models are known as prototypes and are great to test the product. On top of that, manufacturing businesses can utilize 3D printing to make the product development cycle much faster.