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October 22, 2021

Wow. Something exciting is coming to digital dentistry.

In a move that few expected, 3Shape have just launched a brand new platform: 3Shape Unite

This app-store based platform aims to make digital workflows and communication easier than ever before. 

Included free with every TRIOS, the Unite platform allows practitioners to enjoy the freedom to
effortlessly manage and expand their digital dentistry offerings via an ever-growing Unite Store app library.

Here at iDD, we are excited to see a company innovate and bring something new to the table. 

What is 3Shape Unite?

3Shape Unite is an open dental treatment platform for dental clinics that brings dental companies, dental solutions, and labs together, enabling dentists to manage all their cases with ease all within the same software. 

In the spirit of having a completely open platform, industry leaders, Henry Schein, Ivoclar Vivadent, and the Straumann Group, have teamed up with 3Shape as Unite founding partners to launch the platform.

The partnership enables 3Shape Unite users to have direct access (with optimized integrations) to: Henry Schein’s Practice Management Systems, clear aligners, implants, and restorative solutions.; Ivoclar Vivadent’s dental applications for both dentists and dental technicians, and the Straumann Group’s clear aligner, implant, prosthetic solutions, and services.

For dental laboratories, 3Shape Unite provides a platform and directory for them to become more visible to dental practices, market their services with a profile they create, and take advantage of an optimized order workflow with practices.

What's the need for this platform?

Digitalization in clinics is accelerating at a rapid pace. There is a massive influx of new digital tools and workflows in the clinic. However the issue is they are all unconnected, making it harder to use them all seamlessly.

This is what 3Shape Unite solves - it connects practice management systems, scanners, thousands of labs, leading dental companies, clear aligner manufacturers, 3Shape apps and other companies in the industry. 

Anyone who has dived into digital dentistry knows the common issue currently - you are often dealing with multiple different treatment partners, dental labs and technologies. A lot of time is spent transferring data or making all these different factors simply work together. This includes using cloud storage, email, WhatsApp even some times text messages. There is no unified software or platform to house and transfer this large amount of patient data in a user-friendly way. 

The issue with digital dentistry these days. No seamless connection between all the tools.

For the dentist its all about making a platform that is easy to use and navigate and improve the customer experience - being able to use / order anything you need all from one platform, helping improve the efficiency of the entire process.

For labs - it will make their life easier as all the patient information and digital records will be gathered in one place, accessible from anywhere.

A centralized place for all patient records.

What apps?

3Shape has invested heavily into this platform with 1000’s of Unite Store apps planned. This will enable dentists to expand their horizons with a vast selection of lab and partner apps for all sorts of treatments. All this will be simply accessible in one place – the Unite Store.

The built-in Unite Store lets you find your lab of choice with ease, or you can choose to collaborate with one of our trusted treatment providers or design services. 3Shape Unite comes with a new intuitive interface, simplified lab order form with built-in chat, a place to store all patient imaging data and much more. 

The app store will also house 3Shape's own apps for patient engagement or in-house design. With full integration between TRIOS and all partner apps, there is no more need to switch platforms during your workflow.

The idea is to unite world-leading dental companies and labs you know and trust, to simply improve accessibility and workflows to make digital dentistry even easier.

3Shape Unite App Store

An example of the 3Shape Unite App Store and Application

What about 3Shape Communicate?

3Shape Communicate is the backbone of 3Shape's order exchange and communication services between clinics and labs around the world. 3Shape Unite and Communicate will therefore co-exist. Several features such as how you connect with labs, how you interact with labs and get order progress information from your lab have been improved and are now manageable from within 3Shape Unite.

How do I upgrade to 3Shape Unite?

3Shape Unite will be an upgrade to 3Shape Dental Desktop, and will therefore replace the current Dental Desktop software. Both 3Shape Unite and 3Shape Dental Desktop will co-exist in the market until all users have upgraded to 3Shape Unite. At some point Dental Desktop will no longer be supported. There is no additional cost to upgrade or use 3Shape Unite. The upgrade is completely free.

Once available in your region, a simple software update within your current Dental Desktop will become available, and you simply install it. Everything you can do today in Dental Desktop will be available to you in 3Shape Unite.

Try it yourself, in the 3Shape Unite Simulator.

An example of an improved workflow - Ordering Clear Correct aligners directly from 3Shape Unite.

When is it available?

3Shape Unite

What does this mean for the future?

With the launch of Unite, 3Shape may have something very special on their hands. Anyone enthusiastic about digital dentistry has been asking for this sort of interconnected platform for years. In hindsight, we are surprised it has not been done before.

It is incredibly smart what 3Shape has launched. We are very excited to see a company innovate and bring something new that has a chance of changing how we all practice forever. Rather than just releasing another slightly faster scanner. Dental innovation is something that 3Shape seems to be focused on.

We know first-hand from personal experience that it can be a real headache to get various digital technologies to work together smoothly. For the average dentist, they do not have time to troubleshoot and find work arounds. Therefore we expect this will be an attractive platform.

This platform will also make digital dentistry much more accessible than ever before. Through the app store, dentists will now have access to a huge range of different treatment modalities. 

Additionally, we expect new innovative solutions to be created on the back of this new inter-connected ecosystem. It is exciting to think what the future of dentistry will look like.

Lastly, in addition to removing the TRIOS mandatory subscription fees, 3Shape Unite has now officially made the TRIOS scanners more attractive than ever before. You can read our review of the TRIOS 4 here.

We are looking forward to trying 3Shape Unite and sharing our experiences with you. If you have any questions leave them below. 

About the author 

Dr Ahmad Al-Hassiny

Dr Ahmad is a global leader in digital dentistry and intraoral scanners, carrying out lectures as a KOL for many companies and industry. He is one of the few in the world who owns and has tested all mainstream scanners and CAD/CAM systems in his clinic. Dr Ahmad Al-Hassiny is a full-time private dentist in New Zealand and the Director of The Institute of Digital Dentistry (iDD), a world-leading digital dentistry education provider. iDD offers live courses, masterclasses, and an online training platform, with a mission to ensure dentists globally have easy and affordable access to the best digital dentistry training possible.

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