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Apple Slashes Australian App Store Prices To Match US

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the all-things-being-equal dept.

Australia 81

An anonymous reader writes "It's been a long time coming, but Apple has finally readjusted the price of apps in Australia to match pricing in the U.S. While they remain more expensive than in the U.S., premium apps have still received a price-cut, with $8.99, $9.99 and $11.99 apps dropping to $8.49, $9.49 and $10.49, respectively. Movies and music, meanwhile, remain unchanged. In recent months, Apple has come under fire from consumer watchdogs, angry customers and even the Australian Government for its local price markups."

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81 comments

Shows the benefits of being Apple. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760194)

Even though there's alternatives a lot of Australians have "affection" for Apple and their own percieved apple lifestyle so they'll complain and keep paying up.

Re:Shows the benefits of being Apple. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760936)

No.

We Australian's are so dumb that we pay whatever is on the price tag. Our dollar is almost 10% higher than the American dollar yet we still pay more than 60% higher for most goods. That is, the same goods that Americans get that come from China. Shit, it is even cheaper per square metre to rent space on a container ship to move goods to Australia than America.

Companies and businesses charge that simply because they can. I think that people here are starting to cotton on though. Hence Australia will finally fall into the recession that the rest of the world has been experiencing.

Re:Shows the benefits of being Apple. (0)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761344)

Nah - the Australian dollar isn't strong, it's the US dollar that's weak. It's the same story with the Canadian dollar and many other foreign currencies. Of course don't tell Americans that or you'll get an earful of "NO WAI USA is NUMBER 1 USA USA USA SEAL TEAM 6!". Actually this is a smart move by Apple. Their cash reserves are so large that they really can afford to stock up on Australian dollars. See Australia, like Canada, is in the fortunate position of having vast untapped natural resource reserves and very low populations compared to their land areas. Therefore these are two countries that will always have a future - provided they continue with relatively stable governments, avoid drowning in debt, and avoid getting invaded. For now their currencies are a shelter.

Re:Shows the benefits of being Apple. (1)

Caerdwyn (829058) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765664)

anti-American screed

Sure, buddy,

See Australia, like Canada, is in the fortunate position of having vast untapped natural resource reserves and very low populations compared to their land areas. Therefore these are two countries that will always have a future - provided they continue with relatively stable governments, avoid drowning in debt, and avoid getting invaded. For now their currencies are a shelter.

In other words, the value of Australia and Canada have nothing to do with the people in it, just the dirt under their feet? Is that what you're saying?

Let me know how you're doing when Indonesia realizes it has ten times Australia's population, or China realizes it has fifty times Australia's population, and wants liebestraum and those untapped resources. You may whine about Americans now, but you've got a much bigger problem on your doorstep. Tell me what history teaches happens to nations that are resource-rich but underpopulated, and who don't have (or actively alienate) powerful allies.

Re:Shows the benefits of being Apple. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36766488)

With Australia being part of the commonwealth, they'll need to take on the entire commonwealth for that to happen.

The benefits of being an American ally. (1)

Caerdwyn (829058) | more than 2 years ago | (#36768862)

The Commonwealth has no real ability to project power. If Australia were invaded, no other Commonwealth nation has the firepower, the assets, the logistics train, or the economic ability to undertake such a huge and difficult mission. Even the United States, with its unquestioned dominance of the seas and the best logistics operations in the world, takes months to years to build up or withdraw military forces on that scale, and as current budgetary crises show, difficulty sustaining the expense. Aircraft carriers and amphibious battle groups are the only means of quickly moving in enough firepower to deter and defeat a major invasion, and aircraft carriers require a supply chain that needs protection the whole way.

Have a look at https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/List_of_aircraft_carriers_in_service [wikimedia.org] ... it pretty much tells the tale. If you add up the tonnage of every other operational aircraft carrier in the world (which maps well to the number of aircraft they sustain), that's still less than 25% of the US capability. And that doesn't even take into account operational expertise

Commonwealth military power consists of domestic defense (land-based air forces, conventional armies) and small expeditionary forces (special forces and sufficient logistics to supply those small special forces groups). Even Great Britain, by a huge margin the most powerful of the Commonwealth nations, has a limited ability to forward-deploy air power and ground troops, and exactly one aircraft carrier; no other Commonwealth nation has even one. Consider the Falklands war. Great Britain had a whole lot more trouble than many people seem to believe, and that was against a country with essentially a third-world army, an air force of a dozen aircraft, and a handful of French-built Exocet missiles. Great Britain's navy is in worse condition now than it was then, and Australia's heavyweight neighbors are much more militarily powerful than Argentina's.

Or to restate, just how would the Commonwealth be able to get its armies and the (literally) millions of tons of equipment and supplies needed to Australia? Quantas? UPS?

There are excellent reasons why Australia has such a hunger for FA-18s and is waiting so eagerly for F-35s. Those aircraft are all that would stand between Darwin and Jakarta if things went badly.

That, and the US navy.

The US, if it really needed to, could have half a thousand first-rate combat aircraft, ten thousand combat-ready Marines, a full armored division, and a couple hundred aircraft-deployed nuclear weapons anywhere in the world within two weeks. This, more than anything else, is the core of US military strength; not the missiles, not the AIr Force (which must operate from land bases) and not the regular land Army. The US is a naval power; indeed, it is the only naval power with a global capability.

All nationalism aside, those are the facts. Waving Australian flags and burning American flags doesn't change that. 50 years from now, who knows what things will be like, but today, that's stark reality.

Re:Shows the benefits of being Apple. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36764234)

The middlemen have to make money somehow to pay for those exorbitant real estate prices that exist in Australia.

The Prices are now equal (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760204)

Remember Australian prices include the tax, in Australia that's 10%. Remove the tax and the prices are the same.

Re:The Prices are now equal (3, Informative)

Gadget_Guy (627405) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760666)

Remove the tax and the prices are the same.

No, it is not. Even if there was parity between the A$ and US$ (which there is not), $0.99 to $1.19 markup would be a 20% tax. A $1.99 to $2.49 markup would be a 25% tax.

Re:The Prices are now equal (1)

lazybeam (162300) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760948)

I've already bought some apps for my ipad at the new lower price just because it was cheaper. I am using credit I got from dick smith ($50 itunes card cost me $40). I see woolworths has the same special at the moment.

Re:The Prices are now equal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36770930)

That's because they're the same company. Or rather, WW owns DSE.

UK prices have gone up (2)

Nick Fel (1320709) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760222)

UK prices have also been adjusted, but they've gone up to 69p, £1.49 and £1.99.

Norwegian prices also up (1)

Storebj0rn (692884) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760346)

but the adjustments don't follow a clear pattern from 6 to 7 NOK for cheapest apps, from 8 to 9 NOK for itunes songs, Apples own keynote, pages and numbers are up from 109 to 112(iPad) TomTom Europe is up 53% (!) to 840 NOK http://www.macstories.net/news/itunes-connect-maintenance-could-mean-apple-is-eventually-recalibrating-international-itunes-prices/ [macstories.net] explains the previousprice differences

Re:UK prices have gone up (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760352)

At the first result in Google I found, 69p = $1.13, so considering VAT it at 20% we've still got a better deal than the tax-free 99 cents Americans pay.

Re:UK prices have gone up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761510)

At the first result in Google I found, 69p = $1.13, so considering VAT it at 20% we've still got a better deal than the tax-free 99 cents Americans pay.

Its not tax free for me, shows up as 1.07 on the receipt.

Re:UK prices have gone up (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761576)

Thanks - I didn't know that.

Although I suppose my point is really that the 99 cent price is without any sales tax included, and the UK price is less than 20% extra. It's not Apple's fault we have VAT that high.

Apple US UK price differences (2)

doperative (1958782) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760242)

"British consumers will have to pay far more than their U.S. counterparts for Apple's latest must-have gadget, the iPad.
Apple has announced that the starting price in the UK will be £429 for the 16GB model with a wi-fi link to the internet - around 25 per cent more than in America. The equivalent price for the same device there is around £340 .. In an effort to explain the price difference between America and Britain, Apple pointed to the fact that there are different, and higher, taxes in Europe, as well as higher transport and other costs
" .. link [dailymail.co.uk]

Re:Apple US UK price differences (3, Informative)

Anubis IV (1279820) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760396)

Indeed, this was part of a global adjustment based on the way that the US dollar is traded today.

For the App Store, the international equivalents of the $0.99 apps have changed to the following prices according to MacRumors [macrumors.com] :

UK: £0.59 -> £0.69
Australia: AU$1.19 -> AU$0.99
Japan: 115 -> 85 Yen
Mexico: $10 -> $12
Switzerland: 1.10Fr -> 1.00Fr
Norway: 6.00Kr -> 7.00Kr

Re:Apple US UK price differences (1)

jo_ham (604554) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760518)

That article is from May 2010, and it is actually inaccurate - the UK price for a 16GB iPad 2 is £399 - still more than the US due to VAT being included in the list price, but less than the £429 quoted.

The difference in price between the UK and US versions is $15 (in favour of the US one) when you exclude VAT and use the current exchange rate.

Re:Apple US UK price differences (2)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761058)

The Daily Mail is what Fox would be if it was in print form. Don't rely on it for anything but far-right spin and propaganda, or conspiracies about Princess Diana's death.

Re:Apple US UK price differences (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36773632)

...or conspiracies about Princess Diana's death.

I thought that was the Express, not that I read either.

Let's hope Steam takes notice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760274)

Take a look at the rip-offs on offer for Australian residents (keeping in mind that AU$1 is worth about US$1.075 at the moment): http://www.steamprices.com/au/topripoffs

Re:Let's hope Steam takes notice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760328)

Hmmm... I live in New Zealand, which typically gets lumped in with Australia in these things, but I can't say I recall ever seeing those prices for games for me. I will have to double-check when I get home (looking at the web store, admittedly signed in to my NZ Steam Account, from an NZ connection).

Re:Let's hope Steam takes notice (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760462)

Steam is well-known to overcharge non-US customers.

Hard Rain Gonna Fall (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760312)

Apple charged God knows what for Aperture before Adobe came along with Lightroom. This looks more and more as each day passes that for all the talk Apple just don't like competition but they've been rumbled. Consumers rebelling against Steve Jobs is turning into another shitstorm like the one enveloping Rupert Murdoch.

How long will it be before people start asking whether Steve Jobs is fit and proper to run a company? Illegal share options? Fixing component sourcing? Gouging? Trying to patent the internet? Lying to employees? Bullying?

Time to cut the maggot out of the rotten Apple!

Re:Hard Rain Gonna Fall (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761630)

And Adobe charges an arm and a leg for most of the apps in Creative Suite. It's not because either company is "evil" or "rotten", it's because when there's a lack of competition, a company can easily charge ridiculous amounts for their products and people will buy them. So it's the lack of competition that's rotten, not the companies themselves.

Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (1)

__Paul__ (1570) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760348)

Check out the prices of Lonely Planet electronic books, Australia vs US & UK [lastcarriage.com] . Utterly disgusting.

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (1)

whm (67844) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760626)

Lonely Planet is an Australia-based company. Maybe this somehow influences prices, perhaps due to tax laws?

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (1)

Jm_aus (869662) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760760)

Lonely Planet is owned by BBC Worldwide. The Australian founders sold the business to them.

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (1)

__Paul__ (1570) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760840)

Even if they still were Australian-owned, our goods and services tax is 10%, which doesn't even come close to accounting for the price difference (especially given that the UK's VAT is what ... 19% now? I could be wrong there, but I think it's upwards of 17%).

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (1)

squizzar (1031726) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760876)

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761034)

You do have to pay VAT on ebooks though.

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (1)

Builder (103701) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761622)

This needs to be upvoted as it is true. One of the main causes of eBooks being expensive in the UK is the fact that you have to pay 20% VAT on them while you don't on books. That means that if an eBook is the same price as a paperback, then the vendor makes _more_ money by selling the paperback because they don't have to give up 20% of their headline price.

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36765758)

This needs to be upvoted as it is true. One of the main causes of eBooks being expensive in the UK is the fact that you have to pay 20% VAT on them while you don't on books. That means that if an eBook is the same price as a paperback, then the vendor makes _more_ money by selling the paperback because they don't have to give up 20% of their headline price.

Yeah... because paper and ink and printer maintenance are all free right? It's not like ebooks can be produced by clicking a couple of buttons and physical goods have manufacturing and shipping goods that virtual ones don't, that's just crazy talk.

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (1)

Builder (103701) | more than 2 years ago | (#36779548)

Most of the costs remain though. Printing and distribution only account for something like 12% of a book's cost. The rest goes into author payments, marketing, editing, reviews, formatting and layout (for each format that you plan to distribute e.g. hardcover, trade and paperback), artwork for covers, etc.

None of those costs disappear.

Re:Want to see a real rip-off for Australians? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36764324)

That's nothing. Compare the prices of automobiles and houses in Australia to US & Canada.

About damn time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760424)

Now for steam games and all technology ($600 for the $430 asus eee transformer? I'll just import it for $40 thanks) products and we'll be set.

Apple US UK price difference (1)

pricesindia (2197550) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760476)

Well, it shocking..I appreciate the concern which is been rose. This is wrong..It is called partiality..

What about EU prices? (2)

cbope (130292) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760500)

So, when is Apple going to adjust their pricing in the EU? Yes, I know we have VAT tax included in the listed price, but it still does not match up given the current weak US dollar compared to the Euro. Currently, 1 Euro is about 1.42 USD. Apple conveniently prices many if not all of their goods at the same numeric value, e.g. 99 USD and 99 Euros, when comparing US and European prices.

I'll give you a personal example. I recently bought an iPad 2 for work from the Apple Store in the EU. I bought the least expensive 16GB wifi-only model, as that's all I really need. Price: 499 Euro. Same iPad in the US: 499 USD. At the current exchange rate, I paid the equivalent of *709* USD, for the same iPad I can get in the US for 499+tax. And please, don't try to give me that old story that it costs *so much* to ship it halfway around the world, that's BS. When you ship product in large quantities, the cost per device is very small, in the order of a few dollars per device, perhaps 10 in the case of an iPad. In single digit quantities the shipping would be expensive, but not in bulk.

I'll also second the comments on Steam, Valve seem to follow the same rule.

In fact, I have noticed this is a common trend for US companies selling goods abroad, something to rake in a better margin on products sold overseas, whereas most European businesses that offer the same products in the US and Europe tend to even out the pricing according to the value of the currencies.

Re:What about EU prices? (3, Insightful)

Apotekaren (904220) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760562)

Car analogy time. Well, not an analogy, but a real life example.

A Cadillac CTS-V Coupé costs between 65,000-70,000USD depending on what goodies you pick out. In the UK, the same car will net you 70,000-73,000 GBP.
At today's rate, that's 110,000-120,000USD. Almost TWICE the going price in the US.

Things to take into consideration are the UK VAT of 20%, and whatever anti-pollution taxes are put on such a high performance car. But double up?

Compare this to how the price tag on European cars is the same or lower in the US, but in USD compared to EUR.

Re:What about EU prices? (1, Informative)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760802)

One of the many benefits of living in the States, my friend--cheap shit everywhere. Cheap as inexpensive (not cheap as in shitty, but that's a conversation that is already held daily on slashdot when all the cheap assholes complain about Apple prices and swoon over their latest generic commodity shitty electronic component).

I get really pissed off when cheap asses over here complain about $3.50 / gallon gas, $200,000 houses giant houses and $20,000 economy cars. Now we are sniveling about the economy for the past 10 years, yet everything here is still roughly 1/2 the cost of everything in Europe. The only difference is the Europeans have adapted, changed their habits and lowered their expectations. And life still goes on there, meanwhile back here people lose their minds when Wal-mart adds $0.30 to the price of a package of (fill in the really bad for you food that is an imitation of the real thing here).

So the low prices here come with some trade-offs. I see the benefit of living here and I see the benefits of living in Europe. I prefer Europe, but the economic reality keeps me here.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36763226)

I've heard this argument before, and it's rather incomplete. You haven't explained WHY it's so cheap here. What is the USA doing right that allows goods to be so much cheaper than in these other places? After all, if a company can build a car and sell it for $20k in the USA (even if it's built in someplace like Belgium), why can't they sell it for nearly the same price in Europe, Canada, or Australia? It doesn't cost that much more to ship cars to Australia, and certainly not Canada.

It sounds to me like something's seriously wrong in these other countries if everything is 50-100% more, and that's before VAT taxes.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 2 years ago | (#36764114)

When your paycheck is worth 2x as one in US Dollars because of the exchange rate, everything costing 2x as much balances out in the end. Taxes are another issue that, like I inferred, the Europeans have adapted to and we AMURRRRICANS! don't understand.

It's not a question of shipping either. You think it costs any more or any less to ship iPads from China to the US compared to shipping them to Europe?

When I lived in England, pretty much everything was the same number price

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

MachDelta (704883) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765054)

Wanna know something sad? A car - virtually ANY car - BUILT in Canada is CHEAPER in the US.
Take the Dodge Challenger, for example. Built in Brampton, Ontario. Base model Canadian price? $26,995 CAD. That's $31,286 US.
Base model US price? $24,895. That's a fucking $6000 difference (~20% markup) for living on the wrong side of an imaginary line.

It's ok though, us Canadians are used to just bending over and taking it, and then begging for more.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

knarf (34928) | more than 2 years ago | (#36769402)

The answer to all these questions about why consumption products in Europe cost more than in the US is really simple, and should be understood by anyone who has ever followed Economy 101. Europeans seem to be willing to pay more for consumption products. If they stopped buying those fruitpads at the customary inflated European price St. Jobs would lower the prices over here. Since they keep on buying, prices stay high. Same goes for just about any other product which can not be stuffed inside a padded envelope and shipped from mainland China.

It is also here where the big lie about globalization gets exposed. Just try to buy that tablet in the US to have it shipped over here. Go on, log on to Amazon (et al), order something and try to have it shipped to Ye Olde Worlde. The many variations of 'This product can not be shipped to the location you provided' will quickly sour your globalization experience. In the case of Amazon they might mention their European operations, with many of the same products. For European prices... so no sale there either.

As long as globalization only works for the one behind the cash register I'd say stuff it - I'm voting with my wallet. Of course that means I'm 'confined' to running older, often second hand hardware, but that suits me just fine. I'll order some spare parts from mainland China for next to nothing, have the goods arrive within two weeks, use them to repair the old conker and raise a virtual middle finger to the globalized but strangely territorial peddlers of consumption goods.

Typed on a recycled 2006 model notebook - no sale for you, HP...

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36769538)

As long as globalization only works for the one behind the cash register I'd say stuff it - I'm voting with my wallet. Of course that means I'm 'confined' to running older, often second hand hardware, but that suits me just fine. I'll order some spare parts from mainland China for next to nothing, have the goods arrive within two weeks, use them to repair the old conker and raise a virtual middle finger to the globalized but strangely territorial peddlers of consumption goods.

Maybe you just need to find smaller sellers, who are willing to sell you products from their US websites and mail them to you. Amazon won't do it because they have alternate sites in these other countries, with higher prices. But a small seller that doesn't have a non-US presence won't care, as long as you're paying for the shipping.

Re:What about EU prices? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761206)

Then don't buy it. If people are buying it, why should they change?

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

poity (465672) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761826)

Do the GM assembly plants in the UK even make Cadillacs? If not, then that Cadillac is imported whole and you can probably expect very high import tariffs on top of the VAT.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36763196)

I don't think that's a good example. 1) It's probably safe to assume Cadillacs don't sell as well in the UK as in the USA due to regional preferences, so it costs GM more to sell them there, after the costs involved in getting them approved for sale by the UK government. 2) Cadillacs in the UK have to be built for RHD, not LHD as in the states. That's an additional cost, again for a much smaller market.

If you want to compare car prices, you need to compare more similar markets. US to continental Europe is a little better, but best is US-Canada. Many cars are much much more expensive in Canada, even though the safety standards are pretty much the same, they're both LHD, etc. The only real differences between US and Canadian cars (which you have to account for if you import a car to Canada from the US) are 1) daytime running lights are required and 2) the speedo and odometer must be in km/h and km. With a lot of modern cars with digital electronic odometers, the second part is a simple fix (sometimes just pushing a button), and the first is easily done these days by slapping on some aftermarket LED running lights. Yet somehow, the ~$30k Volvo I've been looking at lately is around USD$50k in Canada.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760606)

The "apple dollar" is a well-known phenomena among swedish mac users although it has gotten a lot better than it used to be. I remember some guy posting on a forum a bunch of years back when a new version of one of their laptops came out about how he realized it was cheaper to just buy a cheap ticket to NYC, buy a laptop, spend a night in a hotel and then fly back than it was to buy it in Sweden, so he took a two day trip to the US to buy a laptop in order to save money.

Sure, some of it can be explained by sales tax and such but even when you removed that factor there was clearly a lot of markup, but as I stated, it's a lot better these days, at least for hardware, haven't really compared app store prices...

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765218)

Isn't sales/VAT tax in Europe just like that in the USA? I.e., it's added after the price, at the register, rather than being built into the advertised price?

When I've seen comparisons of the price differences between things between the USA and other countries, they usually are for advertised prices, not after-tax prices. For instance, compare the price of a car model sold both in the USA and Canada (two very close countries, with nearly identical auto standards and laws). The Canadian prices are much, much higher, like 30-50%, and that doesn't include taxes. It's usually cheaper for Canadians to just drive down to the US (not a far drive for many Canadian cities), buy a car there, and drive it back up to Canada, then pay a ~$200 fee and 5% tax on the car to import it and register it there, than to buy it locally.

It seems to me that a lot of business owners in other countries are just being greedy.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765704)

Well yeah, greed is a big part of it. When I was younger I was a skateboarder and a snowboarder, the markup on skateboards, snowboards and associated clothes and equipment was, at least at the time, amazing. A snowboard that would retail for $600 in the US would retail for the equivalent of $1200 in Sweden. So it's not just tech stuff, it's pretty much any "luxury item".

Re:What about EU prices? (2)

AeneaTech (1308711) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760618)

Actually, you pay €0.79 instead of $0.99 in the App Store (what this article is about). Also the development program costs €79 instead of $99....

If you remove the VAT it's actually a bit cheaper than the US price...

That iPad you talk about is actually €479, then minus the VAT and converted to dollars it's $595

Re:What about EU prices? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760634)

Well, maybe Greece, Portugal, Spain, and Italy will help the € match the $ soon.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761408)

Nope, Germany can more than make up for all of that.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765242)

As strong as Germany's economy and industrial base is, nothing can make up for hundreds of millions of people who don't want to work and want to collect giant government checks, and have it paid for by people who do work. People are protesting in the streets of Germany these days because of the "lazy Greeks"; they don't want the German government giving them any more bail-outs.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765744)

As strong as Germany's economy and industrial base is, nothing can make up for hundreds of millions of people who don't want to work and want to collect giant government checks, and have it paid for by people who do work.

Nah, all the Germans have to do is get the old freight cars rolling again to er, mobilize the workforce.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Caerdwyn (829058) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765442)

Nope, Germany can more than make up for all of that.

Maybe they can, but should they? Will they? It's becoming a real political football in Germany (and other countries like Finland). Some are already wondering how much longer the Eurozone is going to last.

Re:What about EU prices? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36760672)

Prices in Switzerland (CHF) have been reduced in the App Store.

Globalization and pricing is wierd. I know quite a few people who buy their Porsche Cars in the USA and have them shipped here to save around 10.000 - 15.000 USD per Car (already including the required adjustments that have to be made for the Cars to be legally driven here). Instead of a mere 300km trip to the customer the porsche goes to another continent and back. and yet is still cheaper.

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765338)

So does anyone reading this have any answers as to what is causing this? I see people talking about it a lot, esp. with cars, but I've never seen any answers, only lame dismissals like "everything is cheaper in America" without any explanation WHY, but instead with the tone that somehow things being cheaper here is "bad", and that things should be more expensive, just because.

There's something seriously wrong if a Porsche, built in Germany, is cheaper to buy in the USA and ship across the ocean to Switzerland (which is right next door to Germany), then to simply go buy it in Germany right where it's made, or nearby in Switzerland. It's obviously not a tax problem either, because you have to pay the same taxes when you import the car.

My family has been thinking a little about moving to Canada, so I've looked into this issue here, because we're also looking at buying a new car in the next year to replace our oldest one, which is 16 years old now. A new Volvo costing around $33k here costs about $51k (in USD) in Canada, with similar options. WTF? There's no significant difference between these cars, except the mph vs. km/h issue with the dashboards, and all that's really needed there is a software fix to change the digital odometer to read in km instead of miles, since the speedo has both. The car already comes with DRLs standard, and that's the extent of the modifications needed to import a car to Canada from the USA. Otherwise, it's a ~$200 import fee, and a 5% tax on the vehicle's value, which is presumably the same as you'd pay on the price at a Canadian dealership.

So why the difference? No one has ever answered this anyplace I've read. It's not a governmental problem. The price difference doesn't include taxes, which are added on later in both countries. It's not a tariff, because if it were, you'd still have to pay it when importing a vehicle yourself. So it's just the businesses charging more. Is competition so broken in all these other countries that everything costs 50-100% more?

Re:What about EU prices? (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760946)

POS taxes and corporate taxes on profits earned abroad.

So, yeah, I figure that US companies selling overseas have to cover two expenses and lo and behold, that get passed onto the consumer. So thank you for paying taxes to your country and I hope you enjoyed paying taxes to the US as well.

The US is one of the few countries which taxes corporations on profits earned overseas, it is often used as justification by some for selling companies to other companies outside of the US.

Re:What about EU prices? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36764628)

And Americans need to file with the IRS wherever they live..

Aussies are still being screwed... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761316)

Aussies are still being screwed. The AUD is currently at $US 1.07-1.08...

Re:What about EU prices? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761548)

Lot's of places do that. I was in a Saturn electronics store here in germany the other day and saw a camera listed at 399 euros that I can order on amazon.com for 399 US. Even with the international shipping it's cheaper to order from the US.

Re:What about EU prices? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36763650)

"I recently bought an iPad 2"

Because idiots buy the overpriced device anyway.

Global Markets and Differential Pricing (1)

csteinle (68146) | more than 2 years ago | (#36760664)

This is just a continuation of the phenomena where global companies want to take advantage of geographical prices disparities in both directions. Jobs move to low paying areas to keep costs low, but if anyone tries to buy products from other parts of the world they scream foul play. Look at what happened to CDWOW importing CDs from Hong Kong to Europe, or Tesco importing Levi's Jeans. It's even more pronounced with online digital sales, as EU rules forbid companies from refusing to supply across borders (providing the customer is willing to stomach any relevant delivery costs or pick up the item), yet copyright agreements are often per-country. This prevents, say, someone with a UK credit card buying from the German iTunes or Steam stores or vice versa, which they may wish to do depending on the current exchange rates and differential pricing, while it is relatively common for cars to be bought over mainland EU borders (less so where there is a left-hand right-hand drive issue, although it is not unheard of for UK or Irish residents to order right-hand drive cars from mainland European dealers).

Re:Global Markets and Differential Pricing (1)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | more than 2 years ago | (#36768448)

The whole per country licensing inside the EU could come tumbling down real soon now if Mrs. Murphy wins at the CJEU.

Apple is not alone (3, Informative)

EEPROMS (889169) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761456)

Apple are not the only electronics supplier gouging Australians, take a 16Gb Asus transformer Android tablet US price US$399 Australian price US$549. Its so bad now that most Australians with any internet skills are buying their electronics in the USA and paying the shipping costs and are still saving $200 for every $1,000 spent. It gets even worse for laptops, the Australian price for Lenovo thinkpads is nearly twice the US price now.

Lip Service (1)

ausrob (864993) | more than 2 years ago | (#36761838)

Still, that's really not much more than paying lip service to Australian customers, who (presumably) by now are quite familiar with being screwed as 'second class consumers' (in a so-called third tier market). It's really, really hard to defend pricing differences in digital products in particular - especially with a strong Australian dollar - which have more or less identical costs for distribution (especially at the Enterprise hosting/bandwidth end of the scale). That said, it would be nice if this started a trend, and Aussie consumers were given a bit more respect. Of course, Australian consumers need to demand better prices to get more respect instead of paying a premium. Go without that crappy ringtone for a month!

What about Steam? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761886)

Now if only Steam would correct it's prices for the australian market.

Check out what we have to pay compared to the states:
http://www.steamprices.com/au/topripoffs

Australia Isolated (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36761944)

Yeah, but Australia is so isolated... a lot of the cost is to pay to ship the apps there. ;)

Prices in Mexico (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36763352)

The prices in Mexico also changed, they went up by 20%

Finally! Some "free market" goodness! (1)

5hoom (937675) | more than 2 years ago | (#36763590)

The mere fact that apple is adjusting their prices based on exchange rates is a very welcome move as far as I am concerned. Australian consumers pay crazy money at local retailers for games, dvds & such despite our dollar having been on parity with the US dollar for some time. Heck, I'm just glad to see prices that don't include an inexplicable "you are in Australia" price hike.

Re:Finally! Some "free market" goodness! (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 2 years ago | (#36764478)

It's not inexplicable. It's the "I can't believe these idiots keep paying these prices" price hike.

Could it be..? (0)

Caerdwyn (829058) | more than 2 years ago | (#36765252)

Could it be that doing business in Australia is more expensive than doing business in the U.S.?
Could it be that the Australian government's asinine knuckle-dragging policies with regard to content, censorship and taxation puts an increased burden on content providers?
Could it be that geography plays a role in increasing the price of infrastructure, both in obtaining equipment and in servicing a country the size of the United States but with 1/15th the population?
Could it be that licensing is more expensive in Australia due to the legal environment and actions of Australian IP-holding companies and individuals?
Could it be that Australian currency values and exchange rates vary over time?

Nah. Just mindlessly jump on the Apple-hater bandwagon and demand that the rest of the world subsidize Australia. It's easier, and it's what the mob is doing.

Re:Could it be..? (2)

anti-NAT (709310) | more than 2 years ago | (#36770770)

Nah. Just mindlessly jump on the Apple-hater bandwagon and demand that the rest of the world subsidize Australia. It's easier, and it's what the mob is doing.

It's only the people who buy Apple products that care, and I doubt they're "Apple-haters". I don't buy Apple products, so I don't give a shit what Apple charge for them in Australia. I do however think they've been taking advantage of the large currency disparity for too long. Of course, Apple seem to agree that they've been charging to much, otherwise they wouldn't be changing their prices - and if all your other points where true, they wouldn't be changing them for those reasons either.

Apple-fanboi much?

Title fail (1)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 2 years ago | (#36772368)

Title

to match US prices

Summary

they remain more expensive than in the U.S

More expensive != match.

About time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36795108)

With the the AU dollar worth more than the US for well over 6 months now, the AU prices should be CHEAPER than the US, not more expensive.

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