David S. Evans

David S. Evans is Managing Director of the Global Competition Policy Practice at LECG LLC and part of Market Platform Dynamics, a management consulting firm that focuses on strategic analysis and product design for platform-based firms.

  • Invisible Engines

    Invisible Engines

    How Software Platforms Drive Innovation and Transform Industries

    David S. Evans, Andrei Hagiu, and Richard Schmalensee

    Harnessing the power of software platforms: what executives and entrepreneurs must know about how to use this technology to transform industries and how to develop the strategies that will create value and drive profits.

    Software platforms are the invisible engines that have created, touched, or transformed nearly every major industry for the past quarter century. They power everything from mobile phones and automobile navigation systems to search engines and web portals. They have been the source of enormous value to consumers and helped some entrepreneurs build great fortunes. And they are likely to drive change that will dwarf the business and technology revolution we have seen to this point. Invisible Engines examines the business dynamics and strategies used by firms that recognize the transformative power unleashed by this new revolution—a revolution that will change both new and old industries.

    The authors argue that in order to understand the successes of software platforms, we must first understand their role as a technological meeting ground where application developers and end users converge. Apple, Microsoft, and Google, for example, charge developers little or nothing for using their platforms and make most of their money from end users; Sony PlayStation and other game consoles, by contrast, subsidize users and make more money from developers, who pay royalties for access to the code they need to write games. More applications attract more users, and more users attract more applications. And more applications and more users lead to more profits.

    Invisible Engines explores this story through the lens of the companies that have mastered this platform-balancing act. It offers detailed studies of the personal computer, video game console, personal digital assistant, smart mobile phone, and digital media software platform industries, focusing on the business decisions made by industry players to drive profits and stay a step ahead of the competition. Shorter discussions of Internet-based software platforms provide an important glimpse into a future in which the way we buy, pay, watch, listen, learn, and communicate will change forever. An electronic version of this book is available under a Creative Commons license.

    • Hardcover $8.75 £7.95
    • Paperback $22.95 £17.99
  • Paying with Plastic, Second Edition

    Paying with Plastic, Second Edition

    The Digital Revolution in Buying and Borrowing

    David S. Evans and Richard Schmalensee

    The definitive account of the trillion-dollar payment card industry.

    The payment card business has evolved from its inception in the 1950s as a way to handle payment for expense-account lunches (the Diners Club card) into today's complex, sprawling industry that drives trillions of dollars in transaction volume each year. Paying with Plastic is the definitive source on an industry that has revolutionized the way we borrow and spend. More than a history book, Paying with Plastic delivers an entertaining discussion of the impact of an industry that epitomizes the notion of two-sided markets: those in which two or more customer groups receive value only if all sides are actively engaged. New to this second edition, the two-sided market discussion provides useful insight into the implications of these market dynamics for cardholder rewards, merchant interchange fees, and card acceptance. The authors, both of whom have researched the industry for more than 25 years, also examine the implications of the recent antitrust cases on the industry as well as other business and technological changes—including the massive consolidation brought about by bank mergers, the rise of the debit card, and the emergence of e-commerce—that could alter the payment card industry dramatically in the years to come.

    • Hardcover $62.00 £45.95
    • Paperback $33.95 £27.00
  • Paying with Plastic

    Paying with Plastic

    The Digital Revolution in Buying and Borrowing

    David S. Evans and Richard Schmalensee

    In Paying with Plastic, David Evans and Richard Schmalensee provide a nontechnical distillation of their years of research on the economic, technological, and institutional forces that have shaped the payment card industry.

    Since Diners Club issued its first charge cards in 1950, payment cards—credit, debit, and charge cards—have revolutionized how and whenwe pay for goods and services. In Paying with Plastic, David Evans and Richard Schmalensee provide a nontechnical distillation of their years of research on the economic, technological, and institutional forces that have shaped the payment card industry. They show how competition works in an industry that does not neatly fit any of the standard economic models. They describe how the payment card companies such as MasterCard and Visa have developed complex systems for coordinating transactions among their thousands of bank members and millions of cardholders and accepting merchants. Evans and Schmalensee also describe recent developments in the industry and consider its likely evolution.

    • Hardcover $29.95
    • Paperback $21.95 £15.95