The special launch promotional pricing for Windows 8 recently ended, but if you are thinking the regular cost for Microsoft’s latest operating system is bordering insanity, spare a moment for those in Australia.

Staring February 1, Windows 8 Pro upgrade is retailing for $199 — except the land down under, that is. Australian users can get the Pro version of Windows 8 for a nifty (and not so thrifty) price of $420.

Yes, that is $420 United States dollars, you guessed right.

While the Pro version of Windows 8 in Australia costs more than twice as much as its regular price, the standard vanilla flavor of Windows 8 retails for $149. Feels like a steal.

Something eerily similar also happened in 2009 when Windows 7 was released worldwide. Back then the regular upgrade retailed for 119.99 in the United States, but Aussie users had to fork $157.

Obviously, Microsoft is not the only company overcharging users in Australia (and other countries). Several other hardware and software vendors take these liberties due to the simple fact that they can.

In England, for example, technology companies are all too happy to replace the $ sign with the £ symbol, without changing the numbers at all. Not funny. But that’s just how things are.

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  • Robert Trance

    Thank god i have mine much cheaper with upgrade promo code from MS (you could sign up for such), so has cost 15 euros only, Pro. For others was 29.99, which was still very nice

    • Fahad Ali


      • Robert Trance

        It was cool from MS too that you could sign up for and they didn’t even controlled if it really was a new computer, cause that promo was only for new machines in principe…

        • Fahad Ali

          True. And it also avoided a Vista fiasco, of slow initial sales. Market share is one thing, but at least the sales numbers are there.

          • Robert Trance

            I love Windows 8 (especially with the upgraded touchpad driver now, enabled finally tablet-like functions), and i hope extremely to become big. Maybe the promised summer upgrade Blue will boost high

          • Fahad Ali

            Agreed. And there are enough improvements and refinements under the hood from Windows 7. A lot of polish.

  • xinu

    This article hits the nail exactly. I get so annoyed when I see products priced in GBP with the exactly same price tag as their USD counterparts. Too often are the symbols merely exchanged. It actually makes more sense to purchase electronics on trips to mainland Europe where most of them seem to be cheaper. All technology companies are guilty of this.

    • Fahad Ali

      Tell me about it. Europe, particularly UK, is a free-for-all for technology companies. They do it because they can, as I said.

  • Pratyush Nalam

    Well, in India it is appropriately converted using an exchange rate of 50 (even though it is more like 55 now)

    • Fahad Ali

      Good to hear that!