Price Gouging in Oz: MS, Adobe and Apple in Well Deserved Tight Spot.

By on March 23, 2013 7:08:21 AM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

DrJBHL

Join Date 04/2002
+2150

 

The Australian Parliament has finally gotten off its duff and is probing the price gouging there.

This is getting ridiculous. It’s actually cheaper for an Australian to fly to the US and buy CS6 here than to buy it in Oz! Well, Adobe’s going 100% digital and dropping box sets, so that might well not be happening any more, but the Australian legislature is demanding answers. Good for them, and high time. This has been going on for decades.

Companies often charge a premium of more than 70% in Oz as compared to the US pricing:

Microsoft: Office Professional USA: $399, AU: $599… failed to justify the price difference. So what did Pip Marlowe (MS’s Oz managing directrix) say? “customers will vote with their wallets”. They probably would, except tat the alternatives are also inflated. She might have equally said, “Let them eat cake.”

Adobe’s Oz managing director Paul Robson couldn’t justify the nearly 75% higher price for boxed editions of CS6 but pointed out the more equally priced cloud edition. That’s just absurd, since Adobe is eliminating physical editions in the future: Maybe the news takes longer to get to Oz, too.

Apple’s Australian boss Tony King came out best of the three. He stated that hardware differs in price only after conversions and taxes are figured in. The higher prices for digital content resulted from higher prices for Australia resulted from higher contract prices from the record labels and studios setting higher prices for Australia over similar content for the USA.

One has to wonder if these things are carry overs from before the digital age, when all content was physical. If so, it’s high time that delivery method should determine price. It costs next to nothing to deliver these goods digitally. After all, wasn’t that the main selling point of the internet and the digital age?

Whether that’s true or not, it’s high time Australians get treated equally with respect to digital delivery, and that physical delivery prices come into line and be justified by fact, and not by “What the market can bear.” That proposition requires an alternative priced differently.

Perhaps the best alternative is using Open Office or Libre Office, and returning the thumb in the eye.

Source:

http://www.neowin.net/news/microsoft-adobe-apple-poorly-justify-australian-price-gouging

47 Replies
Search this post
Subscription Options


Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 8:09:06 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

  I agree, with digital delivery, physical location should not be much of a factor in pricing aside from taxes and currency exchange rates.

As for actually shipping things to OZ....well, it is all downhill from most of the world, isn't it? The boats should be able to coast most of the way there.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 8:20:11 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Apple’s Australian boss Tony King came out best of the three. He stated that hardware differs in price only after conversions and taxes are figured in. The higher prices for digital content resulted from higher prices for Australia resulted from higher contract prices from the record labels and studios setting higher prices for Australia over similar content for the USA.

Good on you, Apple..... blaming the labels....for Apple's price gouging...

Bloody wankers couldn't lie straight in bed.

"conversions"?

Fucking conversions?

In my lifetime the $AUS has been anything from 45c USD to $1.06 USD ....and I see fuck-all difference in their 'conversions'....

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 8:36:06 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Just to be painfully clear....once upon a time the US might pay $100 for a ver of windows....and at 45c to the Aussie dollar we'd pay "the same".... about $220.

Now....the US pays $100 and we're still paying "the same" $220....

 

...except now that $220 is the equivalent of $240 USD .....and the US pays 100......

 

Digital download?   THERE IS NO 'extra cost'......the buyer pays for the "shipping" via his ADSL.

 

This isn't some cerebral economics bullshit....it's just plain common-or-garden BULLSHIT.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
Sign Up or Login and this ad disappears!
There are many great features available to you once you register. Sign Up for a free account and browse the forums without ads.
March 23, 2013 8:58:07 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

At least Adobe was smart enough to say the extra cost was to provide marketing and a greater shopping 'experience', and apple try to justify the cost with production. This will give them an argument when the ACCC takes them to court.

When MS came up with, they can create a price they thought they could get out of a market, and if someone doesn't like it they don't have to buy it ... OMG, their lawyers must be having a heart attack.

They just gave the ACCC the smoking gun after they shot themselves in the foot. Talk about having no idea ...

 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 9:08:26 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Jafo,
This isn't some cerebral economics bullshit....it's just plain common-or-garden BULLSHIT.

 

Exactly. I'm sick of their lies as well. You'd think the Oz legislators' staffers would have those stats for them in the case of such an 'answer' (aka bald faced lie).

 

 

 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 9:48:37 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

Steam US price for a random game: 50,00 $

 

Steam EU price for the same game: 50,00 €

 

50,00 € = 64,965 $

 

NEARLY 65 $ for the same game..... and dont tell me it cost more to distribute the stuff to Europe then to download it from the US.

 

That is an UNJUSTIFIED 30% price rise!

 

 

And this is even better:

 

Star Trek: EU price: 60,00 €.....

Star Trek: US price: 50,00 $....

 

WTF?

60,00 € = 77,898 $.

That is an OUTRAGEOUS 56% price rise!

 

 

Steam offers are not worth ANYTHING.

 

One should sue them for fraud until they are bankrupt.

 

I wont buy anything from them.

 

 


Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 4:33:45 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

I love how it's fraud when someone sticks a higher price tag on something and people pay it.  Be less commie, more capitalist.  You wouldn't be in this position to begin with.

 

You guys are the ones that said yes when they went and region locked everything so they could give poor countries a break and still give you the shaft.  Well, congratulations, price gouging on digital media is exactly what we've all got going on.

 

Australia is the only English speaking country of any size in Region 4.  It's populated by droves of South Americans, you have dick for competing markets.  If you didn't want this to happen, it was simple to prevent.  You just had to tell them to go fuck themselves when they came to you with their good little socialist plan to keep screwing you with a product that had never been competitively priced to begin with.

 

I get a real kick out of this every time it comes up.  I may have to watch the world collapse around me, but at least I get to be entertained by everyone screaming bloody murder over the few little things they've managed to notice long enough to complain about.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 6:47:15 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Australia isn't populated by 'droves of South Americans".  Geez you can talk crap.

We 'guys' didn't say 'yes' to anything....it was thrust down our throats as a fait accompli.

And 'we all' don't have it going on.  If the pricing MATCHED the source's [the US] then there would be no 'gouging'.

Go 'get a real kick' somewhere else, troll.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 7:07:07 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

psychooak, you are full of politics (bullshit), there are far more AFGAN boatpeople than south americans in australia, and as jafo outlined the region locking was FORCED on us BY the US.

you have proved that your name is CORRECT ie psycho as in insane and as intelligent as a tree.

harpo

 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 7:27:09 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Just to add...for the ignorant...the ACCC already decreed that Region Coding was anti-competitive and thus not enforceable...hence it is LEGAL to sell Region unlocked DVD recorders/players.

That was done years ago..... and is why much of the DVDs I buy come from the US and UK.  I get them here cheaper via airmail than can be purchased locally.

Most recent was for a friend....Beatles collection.....about $300 here.... online for 160.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 7:31:01 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Psychoak was talking more about Region 4 than Australia, which doesn't have much to do with why the companies are in trouble... it has more to do with digital distribution

 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 23, 2013 8:00:01 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

Thanks for the extra entertainment.

 

Region 4 is South America.  Region 4 is where they stuck Australia.  Your region is populated by South Americans.  If I need to clarify further it will take some thinking, but I'm sure I can come up with something.

 

Jafo, are you not enjoying your precious copyright laws today?  You've said all kinds of things about anyone that subverts our precious copyright laws, what's so bad about a company making things that only play a particular vendors discs and then letting them charge you whatever they want?

 

Harpo, you added a letter.  I'm from Alaska.

 

Have fun blaming the US for your purchasing choices and support for copyright laws that let a company do anything they damn well please to the end consumer.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 12:13:04 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Enjoy the entertainment...and the time-out.

This has exactly zero to do with copyright laws....never did, although it should be added Australia is currently in bed with the US version of them....although we once were with the English ver [obviously].

The issue with disparate pricing is simple DISCRIMINATION.

Imagine how much balls MS or Apple would need if their pricing policy was...."Oh, you're an 'African American'?  OK, then the price is 50% more....."

 

If that idea is abhorrent then perhaps outsiders can understand just how 'wrong' gouging actually is...

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 12:41:23 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

Quoting Jafo,
Imagine how much balls MS or Apple would need if their pricing policy was...."Oh, you're an 'African American'? OK, then the price is 50% more....."

No different than saying "Oh, you're not a senior citizen?  Ok, then the price is 50% more..."

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 2:33:54 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Screw Apple and video games, etc. I am still trying to figure out how a drug can cost 7 times more in Oz than the U.S.A. And I have seen the reverse with EURO countries costing a fraction of what thew Americans have to pay for the same drug. When did saving lives, relieving suffering, and easing pain become the bastardized market ir is?

Nothing personal, but i could give a rats ass who pays what, where for software. Sometimes I think it's done to distract folks and have them confuse what's important.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 2:47:59 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Seleuceia,
No different than saying "Oh, you're not a senior citizen?  Ok, then the price is 50% more..."

Which is against the law, but it's ok to say "Oh, you're a senior citizen, have a 50% discount off our normal price"

 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 4:54:08 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Discounting is usually a market segment grab, or to move no longer wanted stock, or to boost exposure/attendance to stores where full price products might catch your eye while you there getting that half price stylus.

For seniors, it's still essentially the same thing - recognising a reduced income segment of society and giving up some of your profit to benefit from the added sales - the profit is still there in some form. I'll concede there is a possible an element of social conscious pandering, but I suspect this might just be a happy side effect. Though I know plenty of seniors who are actually the 'wealth' of the family - so I'm not so sure they should be considered as poorly as they are when it comes to spending capacity.

Regardless, it unfortunately doesn't apply in this situation... unless the entire US is considering itself a senior citizen compared to the rest of the world?

Nah, sorry, it's still exorbitant discrimination and gouging.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 6:53:30 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Jafo,

Just to add...for the ignorant...the ACCC already decreed that Region Coding was anti-competitive and thus not enforceable...hence it is LEGAL to sell Region unlocked DVD recorders/players.

That was done years ago..... and is why much of the DVDs I buy come from the US and UK.  I get them here cheaper via airmail than can be purchased locally.

Most recent was for a friend....Beatles collection.....about $300 here.... online for 160.

 

doesn't that prove the Apple representative right and it is really about the film and music industry?

btw. Australians get one of the best deals worldwide for the iPad mini. http://www.techhunter.co.uk/reviews-exclusives/apple-ipad-mini-global-price-comparison/02481/

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 7:01:46 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Thing is, the price gouging doesn't stop with MS, Apple, Adobe or Corel... nor with digital downloads/software.  Australians have always paid more for hardware, and while this is with all hardware, it is considerably so with regard to CPU's, RAM and graphics/sound cards.

Now various excuses are used to try and justify this, but none of them are legitimate and none wash with me.  The cost of shipping is blamed for Australians paying more than Americans, but the majority of PC hardware entering Australia comes from Asia, which when compared to the US, is right at our back door.  In other words, it cost more to ship to Australia, a much shorter distance, than it does to the USA.  BOLLOCKS!!!!

Another excuse is the exchange rate and how prices are determined by the US dollar.  Again, that is crap!!!!  The US dollar should not even be a consideration when Asian owned companies [Gigabyte, Asus, etc] are dealing with Australian companies.  Furthermore, the Australian dollar has been above parity with the US dollar for a couple of years now, so if prices are determined by the USD and the exchange rate, why the fuck have prices not come down? I was just looking at some US prices for motherboards in connection with a conversation I've been having with RedneckDude and was flabbergasted at how low the prices were... between $35 and $75 USD for items that range from $95 to $189 AUD... for the exact same fucking items.

The other thing blamed for high prices for PC parts is the Australian taxation system and duties imposed.  Yes, the Australian government imposes higher taxes on these items than US or European governments, but even so, this does not account for 60% to 100% mark up on US or European prices.  Fact is, there's greedy bastards price gouging Australians... and they get away with it because lower priced alternative products simply aren't available.  In other words, the ***** have us by the short n curlies

For mine, they'd have their nuts cut out and be fed 'sweetbread' until they choked on it.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 4:49:56 PM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

How can you make 50% extra GP1 without any additional cost?

Sell to Australia.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 5:20:08 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

I thought when you use a credit card to buy something the conversion cost is passed on to the user, not the company that sells the item.  Also some credit cards do not change a conversion fee and Paypal doesn't or at least it use to not.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 24, 2013 5:42:48 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting PoSmedley,
I am still trying to figure out how a drug can cost 7 times more in Oz than the U.S.A.

I left this one alone last night because I was a little more than angry... I was entirely pissed off, and I would have used language that would have seen me taking an enforced time out.

As for drugs costing anything up to 500% more here in Australia, well I asked my member of parliament a few questions about it, and I was told that the major reason is that US drug companies use the same excuses as MS, Apple and Adobe, etc... the cost of shipping, the exchange rate and other regional factors. 

Again, the exchange rate excuse is pure bullshit, given the AUD is buying $106 USD.  The cost of shipping is also bullshit. There's a drug factory just 30 minutes from my address that makes numerous drugs under license from the US.  And what fucking regional factors? Drugs made under license here in Australia are shipped to places like Papua New Guinea and Indonesia and sold at prices up to 400% less than we can buy them in the country of manufacture.

My member of parliament also told me that US drug companies are behind many medicines being taken off the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, a government subsidised scheme to make drugs affordable to pensioners and low income families.  According to him, the US drug companies have been placing undue pressure on the government to remove subsidies on a whole range of medicines, though threatened price increases and denial of service, etc.

Tramadol is one of those drugs that has been taken off the PBS and at 69 bucks a packet [x3 per month] I simply can't afford it, not even the generic version, because that too has been removed from the list. My doctor is looking into affordable alternatives, but to date there aren't too many affordable options that I feel safe in taking due to side effects and addiction, etc.  I am thus having to deal with levels of pain I needn't be experiencing... all thanks to greed.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 27, 2013 7:06:51 PM from Little Tiny Frogs Forums Little Tiny Frogs Forums

 

 

  I work in logistics here in North America.  We ship goods to Japan and I can shed some light on why shipping costs may be more expensive to some regions over others.

 

North America is by and large the largest receiver of containers from Asia.  Container ships which come to Port here (Vancouver, BC) are always full.  In contrast, container ships that head back to Asia are somewhat empty.  It basically means that it is extremely cheap to ship a container from here to Japan because it is better to get some money (and a full container) then to just take an empty back to be refilled.

 

I am willing to bet that Australia doesn't get 'full' container ships.  And the containers that do get shipped are probably not full either.  So a lot of empty volume has to be made up in costs that are passed on to the consumer.  By the way, Asia is not 'right next door' to Australia.  It is 7500km from Tokyo to Vancouver.  It is 7800 km from Tokyo to Sydney...8000 to Melbourne.  Even southern Asia is shipping a fair distance.  5500km from Bali, Indonesia to Sydney.

 

On another note, after the Republicans destroyed the American economy, the Canadian dollar was worth more then the US dollar.  Basically from around 1.35 US to around 90 cents US.  But goods such as books were still sold at the 'sticker' price on the back which was by and large 40% more then the US cost.   As a Canadian, the price to me was no different under Clinton then it was under Bush, and my wages were only higher, but the manufacturer who was selling it to Canada was seeing a big difference.   But since the US is right next door, I could drive over the border, buy my goods, and drive back in an afternoon....and many Canadians live near the border.

 

So I am not sure if there is a solution, other then buying the goods from North America, and having them shipped to your house by Fed Ex.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 27, 2013 7:34:35 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Liquid Sky,


I am willing to bet that Australia doesn't get 'full' container ships.

How much?... cos I'd love to take your money.

Not long ago I lived right beside the sea lane into Brisbane, and honestly, most container ships I saw were fully laden/low in the water.  Given how much of our manufacturing has been exported overseas, and that the majority of consumer goods these days are made in Asia, the vast majority of goods on Australian shop shelves are imports... from Asia.  Apart from some locally produced food. Australia is dependent on imports for just about everything from electricals; furniture; clothing; automotive; tools; foodstuffs to books and entertainment goods.  In other words, practically everything.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
March 27, 2013 8:15:02 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting starkers,
My member of parliament also told me that US drug companies are behind many medicines being taken off the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, a government subsidised scheme to make drugs affordable to pensioners and low income families. According to him, the US drug companies have been placing undue pressure on the government to remove subsidies on a whole range of medicines, though threatened price increases and denial of service, etc.

Now why do I believe that?

Maybe for the same reason there's no bidding allowed to drive the prices down for Medicare Part D.

Change the Election laws to allow NO direct contributions and total disclosure of all contributions and watch how prices drop.

 

"The only way to change the behaviour of these vendors, as they admit themselves, is to take money away from them. If this day of evidence reinforced anything, it was that the only language these companies understand is the almighty buck."

- http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/australia/it-pricing-inquiry-result-australians-are-fools/1751?tag=nl.e076&s_cid=e076&ttag=e076

You should read that article.

The unmitigated gall of these rapacious, arrogant lizards. Europe was right to hand MS its ass. Australia needs to partner to do the same as quickly and effectively as possible. Crush them and gut them. After all, it's what these bastards have been doing to you for years. 

Count me as someone cheering you on.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
Stardock Forums v1.0.0.0    #108433  walnut3   Server Load Time: 00:00:00.0000860   Page Render Time:

Home | About | Privacy | Upload Guidelines | Terms of Service | Help
WinCustomize © 2014 Stardock Corporation. All Rights Reserved.