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  1. #1
    rubaiyat is offline Registered User
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    Is Apple overcharging non US customers?

    My 2 really big objections to the Mac App Store and now Apple's Subscriptions is the hefty markup on non-USA customers.

    Even for material sourced from the user's own country/currency zone.

    It is just bits & bytes from servers located anywhere. So is purely discriminatory.

    If Apple makes 2nd class citizens of all non-Americans it will double the incentive for them to go to Android not iOS.

    Bad move Apple.

  2. #2
    Giaguara's Avatar
    Giaguara is offline Chmod 760
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    Are you talking about the iPhone? (guess based on the mention of android)
    Or if some other product, please specify more. World is a big place, and there are a few more than a handful of product, and different competition worldwide.

    Two things are always forgotten when comparing the prices between US- and non-US prices: 1) US and Canadian prices don't include tax. So if you order e.g. from Apple.com add an instant 11 % sales tax to the price, and 2) the warranty may differ. E.g. good sold in Europe have a manufacturer's warranty for 24 months for manufacturing defect vs the usual 12 months warranty
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  3. #3
    ElDiabloConCaca's Avatar
    ElDiabloConCaca is offline U.S.D.A. Prime
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    Don't forget VAT (which I believe applies even to "bits and bytes") and typically hovers around 19%.

    None of this is due to Apple -- this is all federal and local goverment taxes. Apple charges the same (or very close) for a Mac Pro here as they do in Europe -- but the European government mandates that the Mac Pro automatically cost 19% more in Europe because Apple is a United States company.

    I feel your pain (er, no, I really don't because I'm in the USA -- but I understand) but you're barking up the wrong tree. Apple has no control over taxes and VAT and the like. It's not Apple doing this to you, it's your local government and the laws of doing business internationally.
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  4. #4
    rubaiyat is offline Registered User
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    Apple is charging way over any applicable taxes and ignores the fact that purchases over the Internet have been tax free anyway.

    I'm in Australia and our dollar is now worth more than the US dollar, but Apple is charging us over 35-50% more for software, iTunes, Movies and apps.

    Even if GST were applicable and it wasn't before iTunes started charging, that is only 10%.

    What really sticks in the craw is when Americans are undercharged for Australian products and we are over charged. It is clearly a 2 class system and I'm tired of subsidising the Yanks.

    …and oh yes it is Apple doing it to us.

    Just did a quick double check. iWork Family pack US$99 / A$169!

    A whopping 70% more in Australia for an identical product.

    The so-called Australian Dictionary included in all iWork distros is a fraud. I could not find one Australian word that it recognises.
    Last edited by rubaiyat; February 17th, 2011 at 06:53 PM.

  5. #5
    ElDiabloConCaca's Avatar
    ElDiabloConCaca is offline U.S.D.A. Prime
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    Purchases over the internet are NOT tax-free, at least in the United States.

    Many vendors do not charge sales tax when they sell over the internet -- but that does not mean that the purchase is not taxable. If a vendor does not charge you sales tax, then you are responsible for paying the government use tax. Most people just plain don't do this (guilty as charged), and for rather small purchases, no one will ever care or "catch" you doing this.

    That still doesn't alleviate the responsibility of paying tax on the purchase, though -- the burden is simply shifted from the seller to the buyer.

    I do see that Apple does charge more in Australia, with no amount of tax or other explanation. Still, I believe other retailers do the same: Dell USA charges $419.99 for an Inspiron 560 (3.2GHz/4GB/500GB/Win7-64) while Dell Australia charges $648.99 for the same model with identical specs.

    Australia also has VAT and GST, and duties are also figured into the mix. Typical duties range from 0 to 17.5% (is this tangible items only, or digital as well? I dunno...), and GST is a flat 10%. Combine those together, and there's your 20% to 30% price hike.

    Apple may be doing it to you, but they're not alone in doing it. The 35% to 50% isn't all their fault.

    I stand corrected on Apple's part in this. Maybe if you darn Australians didn't live so far away it wouldn't cost us so much so ship our bits to you.
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  6. #6
    rubaiyat is offline Registered User
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    Australia does not have VAT, sales tax nor duties on software, due to the laughingly called Australia-USA Free Trade Agreement. The one where the USA gets to gouge us in exchange for a 10 year delay on removing US tariffs, quotas and bans on Australian products.

    Australia is closer to the source of the products, China, so there goes that excuse too. As does the cost of freight which is set extraordinarily high at the US end.

    Transport costs are 2 way. The Australian Holden Commodore is being sold as a rebadged Chevrolet or Buick and you are not being charged over the top prices for those.

    Don't worry the USA won't have to wear its fair share of the costs any time soon because you got our previous quisling Government to pass laws preventing grey marketing and a ridiculously long IPR protection.

    I repeat there is NO tax on purchases over the Internet. I am aware of the US local taxes issue, but that has nothing to do with us.

    None of the generally non-applicable items you listed adds up remotely to +70%, even if they did apply.
    Last edited by rubaiyat; February 18th, 2011 at 05:21 AM.

  7. #7
    ElDiabloConCaca's Avatar
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    Here's an interesting take on why software costs more in Australia than in the US:

    http://www.kotaku.com.au/2010/11/why...-cost-so-much/
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  8. #8
    rubaiyat is offline Registered User
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    Interesting… waffle.

    I personally knew the distributers for Quark XPress. They were driven spare by the gouging Quark engaged in. They had to pay wholesale, ex despatch, higher than retail in the USA! They also had to pay for all freight, promotional material, training, advertising, support etc that in the States was paid for by Quark.

    That alone was once Adobe offered Indesign at a much fairer price, Quark died almost overnight here. Then Adobe having established a monopoly, turned the tables and took up the gouging themselves. My attempts to discuss this with Adobe get quickly diverted. The only competition now is from pirated copies.

    There's a fat margin to be had by anyone getting US goods at US wholesale prices and shipping them to Australia. No wonder the American distributers fight tooth and nail any attempts at allowing parallel grey marketing.

    If there is any substance to the 'higher price of doing business in Australia' the top of the list of reasons would have to be because we are having to pay too much for American products. The circular argument is we are because we always have.

    Since the US market is stuffed, time that we played hardball right back. Want our money? Work for it, just like we have to.
    Last edited by rubaiyat; February 18th, 2011 at 10:13 AM.

 

 
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