Autodesk president and CEO Carl Bass believes the time will come when individuals will be able to make Avatar-type 3D blockbusters on Apple's iPad.

Autodesk currently offers a range of creative software, including Fluid FX, SketchBook Mobile, AutoCAD WS and Inventor Publisher Mobile Viewer for Apple's iOS devices.

"Very soon, users will be able to sit with an iPad at home at make a movie like Avatar," insists Bass, with the ability to create professional-quality 3D content.

Bass also Apple's iPad, iPhone and iPod touch are helping to drive creativity and sell Autodesk software.

"Something crazy is happening in the world of mobile telephone applications. A year ago, some of our guys began a project unauthorised by management, in which they adapted the software to work with the iPhone. We didn't believe that anyone would want to use it, but we were wrong. There is big use."

SketchBook Mobile

SketchBook Mobile has proved a hit with Apple users.

"We've been in the business for 28 years, and 10-12 million copies of our software have been purchased to date. That's a lot, but it's only an average of 11 million over all the years, and all of a sudden half a million people bought the software at the application store," Bass said.

"This was the cheapest project we ever did, which reached more people than any other project. It surprised me."

Bass added that a combination of cloud computing and 3D printers could see home users creating products at home, with designs being produced and made available to all.