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Pricing of Complementary Goods and Network Effects

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  • Nicholas Economides
  • Brian Viard

Abstract

We discuss the case of a monopolist of a base good in the presence of complementary goods provided either by it or by other firms. We assess and calibrate the extent of the influence on the profits from the base good that is created by the existence of complementary goods, i.e., the extent of the network effect. We establish an equivalence between a model of a base and a complementary good and a reduced-form model of the base good in which network effects are assumed in the consumers’ utility functions as a surrogate for the presence of complementary goods produced by others. We also assess and calibrate the influence on profits of the intensity of network effects and quality improvements in both goods. We evaluate the incentive that a monopolist of the base good has to improve its quality rather than that of complementary goods. Finally, based on our results, we discuss an explanation of the fact that Microsoft Office has a significantly higher price than Microsoft Windows although both products have comparable market shares.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 03-12.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:ste:nystbu:03-12

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Postal: New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics, 44 West 4th Street, New York, NY 10012-1126
Phone: (212) 998-0860
Fax: (212) 995-4218
Web page: http://w4.stern.nyu.edu/economics/
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References

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  1. Neil G & al & Michael Kende & Rafael Rob, . "The Dynamics of Technological Adoption in Hardware/Software Systems: The Case of Compact Disc Players," Penn CARESS Working Papers f4df6bc9bda3795823895c786, Penn Economics Department.
  2. Nicholas Economides, 1997. "The Economics of Networks," Industrial Organization 9701002, EconWPA.
  3. Erik Brynjolfsson & Chris F. Kemerer, 1996. "Network Externalities in Microcomputer Software: An Econometric Analysis of the Spreadsheet Market," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 42(12), pages 1627-1647, December.
  4. Clements, Matthew T., 2004. "Direct and indirect network effects: are they equivalent?," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 22(5), pages 633-645, May.
  5. Harikesh Nair & Pradeep Chintagunta & Jean-Pierre Dubé, 2004. "Empirical Analysis of Indirect Network Effects in the Market for Personal Digital Assistants," Quantitative Marketing and Economics, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 23-58, 03.
  6. Nicholas Economides, 2001. "The Microsoft Antitrust Case," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 7-39, March.
  7. Marc Rysman, 2004. "Competition Between Networks: A�Study of the Market for Yellow�Pages," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(2), pages 483-512, 04.
  8. Gandal, Neil, 1995. "Competing Compatibility Standards and Network Externalities in the PC Software Market," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(4), pages 599-608, November.
  9. Economides, Nicholas, 1996. "Network externalities, complementarities, and invitations to enter," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 211-233, September.
  10. Shy,Oz, 2001. "The Economics of Network Industries," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521800952, October.
  11. Chou, Chien-fu & Shy, Oz, 1990. "Network effects without network externalities," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 259-270, June.
  12. Church, Jeffrey & Gandal, Neil, 1992. "Network Effects, Software Provision, and Standardization," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 85-103, March.
  13. Marc Rysman, 2004. "Competition Between Networks: A Study of the Market for Yellow Pages," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(2), pages 483-512.
  14. David Dranove & Neil Gandal, 2003. "The Dvd-vs.-Divx Standard War: Empirical Evidence of Network Effects and Preannouncement Effects," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(3), pages 363-386, 09.
  15. Carmen Matutes & Pierre Regibeau, 1988. ""Mix and Match": Product Compatibility without Network Externalities," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(2), pages 221-234, Summer.
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Cited by:
  1. Michel Fok, 2009. "Restructurer efficacement les filières cotonnières en Afrique : les leçons de la déréglementation des réseaux de service en Occident," Post-Print halshs-00476447, HAL.
  2. Andras Niedermayer, 2005. "Does a Platform Owning Monopolist Want Competition?," Diskussionsschriften dp0517, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft.
  3. Andras Niedermayer, 2006. "Does a Platform Monopolist Want Competition?," Diskussionsschriften dp0604, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft.

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