Additive Manufacturing (or 3D printing) was initially used for rapid prototyping. It has since grown into manufacturing process all its own and is giving manufacturing industries the ability to both prototype and manufacture end-use products. 3D printing fills in the gaps where traditional manufacturing is not the best solution.
Cost effective in low-volume production (up to 1,000 pieces)
Faster turnaround times
Reduces waste to make the parts
Reduced costs make iterations easier