I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least mention Freeprints. It’s a web-based service where you can order prints and have them delivered to your door. They charge $5.69 a month (a $20,000 print order that’s worth $6,400).
Why is it good?
FreePrints has a strong design philosophy: free for all. To be clear, every print that you buy from their site is free forever. So, the idea that a printed print might have a cost attached isn’t really a concern.
Why is this service important?
Because they’re so good. Even if you buy 100 prints, FreePrints will deliver the print only if it’s free to receive. It’s like the Apple Store or iTunes. You still get to receive your goods and have the opportunity to buy something else if you are interested.
What about the time it takes?
The printing process itself is pretty quick and efficient. I mean, printing 100 free print orders would definitely take about 6 months. So, I’d say the printing time is really pretty quick, especially if you’re already going to be getting the print orders that you would see online.
Who are the creators at FreePrints?
I have to say, FreePrints started out as an idea from my friend, David. At the time David started FreePrints, he was building a print business on the side and wanted to find a way to pay the bills. So that’s how they got started. David is a self-taught computer programmer. David was like, ‘Oh, I can do this!’ He had never used web-based programs before, and I think part of him just thought, ‘There are so many people out there who need software now, so why not give it a shot?’
How did they get the word out?
David got in touch with my friend, who then got in touch with the folks at the printer company that was doing the print orders. The printers had a whole list of names that they would refer to. David called one of those guys at the printer company and they said, ‘That’s us.’ That pretty much cemented the name.
How do you feel about the idea of using free services and having something in return?
Freeprints is great, because they actually give you free material all the time. I’m not opposed to selling stuff that I print
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