Originally Posted by Vengeance47
I don't see how you can possibly think buying online solves any issues. One of the main reasons for this was that DIGITAL software from the developers THEMSELVES was marked up more than 50% on certain products. There is no reason what-so-ever that a DIGITAL version of software should be any more or less expensive around the world. The pricing should be global and everyone should be paying the same amount + local taxes.
But what happens to us Aussies is that we are paying 50%+ more to get the exact same software, from the exact same company, from the exact same SERVERS as people in the US and EU do. Which is just plain absurd.
Not only that, but to tell people just to import is ridiculous. Because another issue to this is people who are less aware as to what prices overseas are like. They (the majority of people) walk into the retailer and buy the software/hardware without any knowledge they are paying a RIDICULOUS markup compared to other countries.
The other ridiculous thing is that the Australian dollar is buying MORE than the USD and has been pretty much for the past 2 years. The Australian consumer market has taken nowhere near as much of a hit when compared to the US retail sector, and just in general, Australia is in a far stronger economic state than the US and with the AUD buying above the USD, imports should be cheaper and should have been for the past 2 years as mentioned, therefore it makes no logical sense why we get shafted so badly for things. We can accept a small markup for physical products that need to be shipped from the US/EU/Asia etc. But not 50%+ that is just plain absurd price gouging. But for digital sales, I expect to buy things from MS/Apple/Adobe in USD, just like anyone in the US would. I expect to pay the exact SAME amount as it is a digital product, doesn't require any freight, I'm more often than not using the same servers that a buyer from the US would, and as such, no reason why I should be paying any more.
That's the proof that you haven't been involved in this kind of stuff before. Local taxes are just a mere part of the equation. Have you considered the fact that Australia has a 27% duty on imported software
? Australia is horrible at these things. Shipping a single container can cost over $1,500 in just fees and taxes to get it through customs (see Aus gov site for info).
So if a piece of software costs $100 in the USA you have to factor in a 27% duty, import taxes and fees, the cost of shipping (haven't looked into digital copies but with the internet regs in Aus I assume they do something stupid), the cost of marketing in the area, the difference between the USD and AUD, etc. Shipping costs are generally lower per product when more are needed, but Australia's wonderful internet backbone suggests otherwise.
BTW, the company I work for has been expanding into Australia with software (financial and tax) based products and consider it an economy on the rise so I'm guessing the gov will fix some of the importation issues as companies like the one I work for develop internally there.
Also, this is just a reminder, when you buy things on the internet in the USA you ARE LEGALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR SALES TAX. Just because the site doesn't charge you doesn't mean you don't owe. Nobody bothers with enforcing it in the USA, but it is the case and has always been the case. I'm guessing AUS does a better job of enforcing those things.