Mattel won't sell a 3D printer for toys this holiday after all

The company needs one more year to improve the ThingMaker.

Kris Naudus/Engadget

If you promised your teen a Mattel ThingMaker this Christmas, you may want to find something else that's just as cool ASAP. A spokesperson told Engadget that the company won't be releasing its toy printer this fall like it originally planned. Mattel has pushed back its debut to fall 2017 to give it enough time to further enhance both the $300 device and its companion app.

ThingMaker is the modern version of Mattel's Creepy Crawlers from back in the '60s. Its companion app gives you stock figures to choose from, but all bets are off once you hit edit. You can design warriors with dainty umbrellas, T-rexes or robot-insect hybrids, and then print them out as custom figures.

We got the chance to take a closer look at the 3D printer at Toy Fair earlier this year, where we noticed that the available designs were pretty generic. Now the company has a year longer to add more choices and make sure your kids -- and you, because you'll definitely use this too -- can create unique toys they can't buy from stores.

Here is the company spokesperson's full statement:

"After much consideration, Mattel has decided to move its Thingmaker/3D printer launch to Fall 2017. At Mattel, we pride ourselves on delivering best-in-class products and the additional time will allow us to enhance the digital functionality to ensure we deliver the most engaging end-to-end experience for all family members. We are grateful for the excitement around this product and look forward to exceeding expectations in 2017. For more information/updates on product avail visit"