Apple Lowers iPod Prices Up to 10% in Australia
Apple yesterday lowered prices on its iPod lines in its Australian online store, dropping prices as much as 10% on some models.
The Australian dollar gained strength on the U.S. dollar in the latter half of 2010, moving from a low of 81 cents in June to near parity by October. The exchange rate for the two currencies has remained near that level since that time, with the Australian actually drifting a bit higher than the U.S. dollar over the past few days. Even with the price drops and accounting for taxes built into the Australian pricing, iPod prices remain a bit higher than they are in the United States, although that is common practice for Apple as it deals with higher distribution in many of its international markets and hedges against future currency fluctuations.
Apple is usually very slow in reacting to fluctuations in exchange rates, preferring to maintain stable price points in each country and typically only changing price points in response to currency fluctuations at the time of new product introductions. Consequently, it is unclear why Apple has decided to drop its iPod pricing, and only its iPod pricing, in Australia at this time. Apple's "Back to School" rebate program offering a free iPod touch with the purchase of a Mac did just end in Australia, but the same program also ended in New Zealand and Apple did not opt to reduce pricing in that country. New Zealand's dollar has not, however, gained as much value against the U.S. dollar over the past year as has the Australian dollar.