Software Price Variations - Blatent Descrimination

  Otto von Luvpuppy 17:15 06 Mar 05

I have a very simple question.

Why am I discriminated against when buying software because I live in the UK?

I'm a IT and Design professional. I don't use pirated software, I always pay for the genuine article. I do this because, quite simply, if someone has invested time and effort in developing software that I can use to make money from why shouldn't they be paid for it.

However I'm losing my patience fast.

I use Corel Draw extensively and have been a loyal user from their very first beta version.
I would like to upgrade my version of the software from 10 to 12. I'm happy to download it and I don't need the manuals. Pretty easy customer I would say.
Now take a look at the prices. On the US site, you will find that the download 'upgrade'
will cost you $124 (£64.48), reasonable price I would say.
But I can't buy it from there as I don't have a US address.
I have to buy it from the UK site, - at an outrageous £231.88 + VAT.
The same software, probably downloaded from the same server costing nearly
4 times the amount
it does in the US. Last time I looked I did not earn 4 times the amount of the average US citizen or pay a quarter of the tax they pay - so why should I pay 4 times the amount for my software.

Why? Why? Why?

When you are faced with this sort of blatant discrimination it's no wonder software piracy goes on.

Anybody have a answers to this?
I'd love to hear them.

  €dstowe 17:51 06 Mar 05

Why not ask Corel?

Corel UK
Sapphire Court
Bell Street

0800 376 9271

  Otto von Luvpuppy 17:58 06 Mar 05

I already did!
Their excuse is 'market forces'.
Go figure.

  douglas1973 18:35 06 Mar 05

I agree - it is outrageous. I wish I could help. The reason given by Corel (market forces) is probably correct if I understand the meaning of the words correctly. In other words they charge us £231.88 + Vat because we are prepared to pay these stupid prices. Why? The only reason I can think of is that we have too much money. If we refused to pay these exorbitant prices the prices would go down.
Sorry I am so cynical...

  LastChip 18:49 06 Mar 05

It is no surprise to me that software piracy goes on in the UK, and it is precisely because of the type of blatant rip off you highlight, that this is the case.

How many copies of Microsoft Office for example are squeaky clean I wonder? Far less than Microsoft would wish to believe! Is Joe consumer really going to pay £400+ for Office? It is about time some hard reality set in with these companies. It's no use complaining that people (and companies) are not upgrading when you see practices like this going on.

Not that it's much help to you, but I suspect the reason why companies like Serif have a reasonable client base, is because their software is very fairly priced.

  Otto von Luvpuppy 19:25 06 Mar 05

...I've just switched to Star Office. Suns Microsoft beater. Everything and more than Office offers and comes in at a staggering £22.
Yep - that's right, not a typing error. £22.
Regarding Corel I've done the sums and it's cheaper to take a flight to New York and buy the box there. I feel some grey imports coming on!

  spuds 19:32 06 Mar 05

This seems to happen on a regular basis nowadays, hence the increase of weekend economy trips to the continent and USA.Even the British Customs are improving on their allowances.I notice that some manufacturers are 'zoning' some of their products, so preventing the usage in certain different zoned areas. HP printers were in the press recently, as they are thinking of zoning.

Perhaps these people may have the answer click here

  Otto von Luvpuppy 19:36 06 Mar 05

Good idea!
I'll drop them a line right now.

  bremner 19:42 06 Mar 05

Tell me about it click here

  Otto von Luvpuppy 19:58 06 Mar 05

Okay - an email is winging it's way to the OFT.
Let's see what, if anything, happens. I'll keep you informed.
I suspect that they posess perfect Teflon shoulders and that this little chestnut will slip right off along with most of the others sent to them.

  Dorsai 04:25 07 Mar 05

what is to stop you giving a fake US address, and downloading it from the US site?

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