The SQL ANY operator is a comparison operator used to compare a value with a set of values returned by a subquery. The ANY operator evaluates to true if the value being compared matches any of the values in the set. The operator can be used with various comparison operators such as =, >, <, >=, <=, and <>.


The syntax for using the ANY operator in SQL is as follows:

SELECT column_name(s)
FROM table_name
WHERE value operator ANY (subquery)

In the above syntax, column_name(s) specifies the columns to be selected from the table_name. value is the value to be compared, and operator is the comparison operator to be used. subquery is the subquery that returns the set of values to be compared with.


Here’s an example to demonstrate the usage of the ANY operator in SQL:

Consider a table named products that stores information about various products sold by a company. The table has columns product_id, product_name, category, and price. Let’s say we want to retrieve the names of all products that are more expensive than any product in the ‘Books’ category. We can use the ANY operator as shown below:

SELECT product_name
FROM products
WHERE price > ANY (SELECT price FROM products WHERE category = 'Books')

In the above query, the subquery SELECT price FROM products WHERE category = ‘Books’ returns the set of prices of all products in the ‘Books’ category. The main query then selects the product_name from the products table where the price is greater than any of the prices in the set returned by the subquery.

The SQL ANY operator is a useful feature in SQL for comparing a value with a set of values returned by a subquery.