Freemiums

I was leafing through the May 2014 issue of the Harvard Business Review when I came across an article by Vineet Kumar called ‘Making “Freemium” Work’.
Freemium?? What’s that, I wondered.

Freemium is an amalgamation of the words ‘free’ and ‘premium’. What this means is that you get a core product for free, but for an additional cost, you get a range of added benefits and upgrades. Think of it as a marketing tool that ropes in users lured by the word “free”. And when you are hooked, they dangle the extras – for a fee, of course! A great way to attract potential paying subscribers.

Some well-known brands that use 'Freemiums'

Some well-known brands that use ‘Freemiums’

If you’ve ever played games like Candy Crush or Angry Birds on your phone, you’ll know what I mean. You get hooked on to the free version of the game with its basic levels – and then you get stuck, unable to advance to the next level… Sure enough, a pop-up flashes on your iPad. For $1.99 you can “unlock” more power ups and boosters. Tempting, isn’t it?

I experienced this concept first-hand when I signed up on WordPress to write this blog. WordPress allowed me to choose from a range of free themes, but if I was willing to pay money, I could use a premium theme with far more features.

You know what they say, nothing in life is ever free!

Do you ever pay for apps on your phone or tablet or do you stick to the free ones? Which paid apps have you found really good? What are some of life’s little pleasures that you can still enjoy for free?

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