It’s long been known that US is the cheapest place to buy tech, at least as far as Apple is concerned. Exporting products is more expensive and it’s reflected in the price. That’s fine, but the difference in the price of apps is hard to justify, so much so that members of parliament in Australia have asked Apple why they are paying more for exactly the same thing.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports:
Consumer advocate Choice, which had been lobbying for an investigation of the price differential, welcomed the inquiry … The excuses overseas technology companies used to justify the higher prices, such as the small size of the market, the cost of setting up support centres and the imposition of local taxes and duties, were not acceptable, Choice spokeswoman Ingrid Just said.
The issue would seem to revolve around fluctuating exchange rates, and not only Apple but also Microsoft has been invited to provide an explanation in front of the Australian parliament.
The difference in price is an issue not only in Australia but also elsewhere, with many European and Asian countries feeling the price difference. The Sydney Morning Herald has put together a mini chart comparing some of the prices in Australia and in the US, with some quite shocking price hikes.
Admittedly it’s difficult to keep your prices in line with exchange rates, but you do get the feeling that Apple are slightly taking advantage of the international audience.