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FREE: The Future of a Radical Price

Chris Anderson

Book Overview: 

"Chris Anderson's Free unpacks a paradox of the online marketplace--people making money charging nothing. What was once just a marketing gimmick has morphed into the basis of a trillion-dollar economy."
- Newsweek

The New York Times bestselling author examines the rise of pricing models which give products and services to customers for free, often as a strategy for attracting users and up-selling some of them to a premium level. That class of model has become widely referred to as "freemium" and has become very popular for a variety of digital products and services. (from Wikipedia)

"The thought-provoking material is matched by a delivery that is nothing short of scintillating."
- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"I'd put Anderson and his work on par with Malcolm Gladwell and Clayton M. Christensen as one of the more important pieces of business philosophy published in the emerging global, digital era."
- Alan T. Saracevic, San Francisco Chronicle

Chris Anderson is a British-American author and entrepreneur. He was with The Economist for seven years before joining WIRED magazine in 2001, where he was the editor-in-chief until 2012. He is known for his 2004 article entitled The Long Tail; which he later expanded into the 2006 book, The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business Is Selling Less of More. He is currently the cofounder and CEO of 3DRobotics, a drone manufacturing company. (from Wikipedia)

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Book Excerpt: 
. . . the twentieth century saw people starting to embrace free again as a concept, it also witnessed a crucial phenomenon that helped to make free a reality—the arrival of abundance. For most previous generations, scarcity—of food, of clothing, or of shelter—was a constant concern. For those born in the developed world in the past half century or so, however, abundance has been the keynote. And nowhere has that abundancelawnat abunda been more apparent than in that fundamental prerequisite for life: food.

When I was a kid, hunger was one of the main problems of poverty in America. Today, it's obesity. Something dramatic has changed in the world of agriculture in the past four decades— we got much better at growing food. A technology-driven revolution turned a scarce commodity into an abundant one. And in that story lie clues to what can happen when any major resource shifts from scarcity to abundance.

There are only five major inputs to. . . Read More

Community Reviews

In Free: The Future of a Radical Price Anderson insists that the way to profit online is to give products away. Of course, the intent of such a proclamation is to startle people unfamiliar with online dynamics -- which makes you wonder what tiny portion of his audience is actually startled. Even...more

Goodreads says that I'm "finished with Free", but I disagree. I love Free, and while listening to this audiobook (which was free), I was surprised by how much Free I'd taken advantage of in my life without even giving it a thought.

Chris Anderson says that my generation inherently understands (an...more

We've heard that information wants to be free. We're all for it as long as we are on the receiving rather than the giving end. The value of Chris Anderson's work is in showing us exactly how "free" can work. It turns out it's not a new idea: think radio and television in the days of antennas. Mos...more

At the beginning of Free, Chris Anderson presents a generalized dichotomy toward "Free." Some—mostly the older users—are suspicious of Free and insist they will have to pay somewhere down the line. Many younger users, on the other hand, think that Free, on the Internet at least, is a truism. Ande...more

Disclaimer: I won a free copy of this book from Goodreads First Reads.

Free is a pretty comprehensive overview of the free business model. Anderson first outlines the history of free, the economic and psychological reasons behind free, the reason that free can exist in today's digital world, and...more

Hey, Chris Anderson, the stuff in your house "wants to be free" too, but I'm betting you lock your door so people (we call them thieves, no matter how many of them there are) don't take your stuff.

This book starts off well, and delves into some interesting anecdotal items, detailing some innovati...more

A business classic that everyone should read. Explains 20th century and 21st century economics from a big picture perspective. The basic thesis is that while in the physical world (atoms), products have cost and thus companies can afford to give away small amounts of free samples (5%), or give aw...more

The gist of it is that the price of almost everything will gradually be driven towards being free (in its various forms). Considering this book was released in 2009, in the eight years since, we can already see how much of it turned out to be true. An informative read overall.

Great Book !! I love the way that he explained things by using the concept of economics.

من أمتع الكتب التي قرأتها مؤخرًا، يتناول المؤلف مفهوم المجانية، كيف استخدم قديمًا في الترويج للمنتجات (من أبرز أمثلة ذلك العينات المجانية من أي منتج)، إلى أن وصل أن قامت عليه مباحث جديدة في علوم الاقتصاد Freeconomics وبنيت عليه كبرى شركات العالم التي تقدم جل خدماتها مجانًا مثل جوجل وفيسبوك ..الخ...more

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