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Australia Government Iphone The Almighty Buck Apple

Apple Slashes Australian App Store Prices To Match US 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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Apple Slashes Australian App Store Prices To Match US

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    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: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward


      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

      • by Dunbal ( 464142 ) *
        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 a
        • 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 tha

  • by Anonymous Coward

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

    • by Gadget_Guy ( 627405 ) * on Thursday July 14, 2011 @06:55AM (#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.

      • 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.

  • by Nick Fel ( 1320709 ) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @05:13AM (#36760222)
    UK prices have also been adjusted, but they've gone up to 69p, £1.49 and £1.99.
  • by doperative ( 1958782 ) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @05:18AM (#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 []

    • by Anubis IV ( 1279820 ) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @05:50AM (#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 []:

      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

    • by jo_ham ( 604554 )

      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.

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

    • by whm ( 67844 )

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

      • by Jm_aus ( 869662 )
        Lonely Planet is owned by BBC Worldwide. The Australian founders sold the business to them.
      • by __Paul__ ( 1570 )

        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%).

        • It's 20%, but books are exempt.


          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            You do have to pay VAT on ebooks though.

            • by Builder ( 103701 )

              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.

  • Well, it shocking..I appreciate the concern which is been rose. This is wrong..It is called partiality..
  • by cbope ( 130292 ) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @06:16AM (#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.

    • by Apotekaren ( 904220 ) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @06:31AM (#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: (Score:2, Informative)

        by stewbacca ( 1033764 )

        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 th

        • 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

          • 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

          • 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.

          • by knarf ( 34928 )

            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 envel

            • 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 sma

      • by poity ( 465672 )

        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.

      • 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

    • 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

      • 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, m

        • 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".

    • 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

    • 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.

  • 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 (pr

    • 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 (Score:4, Informative)

    by EEPROMS ( 889169 ) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @08:49AM (#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.
  • Am I the first one to point to the full list of price changes []?

    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

    And also interesting (at least for some) is Apple will allow business to sell custom apps to other businesses in volume directly [].

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

  • 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 expensi

    • 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, otherw

  • Title

    to match US prices


    they remain more expensive than in the U.S

    More expensive != match.

Competence, like truth, beauty, and contact lenses, is in the eye of the beholder. -- Dr. Laurence J. Peter