The price disparity of computing products (both hardware and software) between different markets of the world is one of the more bewildering factors of the technology industry.

Sadly, this practice has been going on for a rather long time.

Buying the same stuff in Europe, for example, is a fair bit more expensive than in the United States. Sure, factors like currency conversion, import tariffs, laws, price of transport and whatnot comes into play, but when it comes to the Australian market, these factors combined do not seem to add up.

And that is because, a parliamentary inquiry has found that Aussies on average pay a 50 percent markup compared to other countries, even when it comes to digital multimedia and software downloads.

Microsoft products on the other hand, were found to be outrageously high priced at a 66 percent premium. But Redmond is not the only company at fault here — Adobe products, for instance, came in at a 42 markup, while Autodesk solutions come with a price hike of 51 percent.

The committee noted that all this adds up to international price discrimination to the clear disadvantage of Australian consumers and businesses.

In fact, the absolute worst part of this practice is that along with regular consumers and enterprises, this disproportionate price surcharge hurts educational institutions, small businesses and people that rely on accessibility software.

The report has outlined a 10 point plan to try and address this situation, with the last resort being the legal banning of “geoblocks” to ensure that Australian consumers have access to software designed for sale in the States and Europe.

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  • John

    Your article says reportedly Australians pay much more for Microsoft products, yet we are big users. Well it’s more than that – we are regularly ripped off here in Australia. Another beef we have is Amazon’s refusal to sell us computer software and hardware YET they are happy to sell us books etc.