Microsoft announces gold nuggets and banana for every Vista sold in Australia

Gold nuggets for every copy of Windows Vista sold in Australia

Microsoft is definitely thinking outside the box here. According to an unsourced article in the Australian IT, Microsoft has officially released the local pricing for Windows Vista in Australia. Whilst I find it strange such an article does not quote a source and neither does Microsoft Australia’s press site reveal such information, I would presume the leading news publication in Australia does not source The Inquirer.

Vista Australian pricing graph

That’s a markup of over AU$200 for the Windows Ultimate compared to what the folks in the blue, white and red country pay for. And well over AU$100 markup for the Home Basic version. Where does that $200 go?

According to APC Magazine, Microsoft Australia inflated the price of Windows XP by an average multiplier of 168% for exchange rate, taxes and profits. Windows Vista pushes up the multiplier to around 190%. What happened in the last 5 years?

Is it the exchange rate? In 2001, every Australian dollar was worth below 50 US cents. Now 5 years later, the Australian dollar has strengthened by 50%, and as of today, every Australian dollar is worth at least 74 cents. Definitely not the exchange rate.

Inflation? Well, inflation has been below 3% for the last 4 consecutive years. And even to make calculations easier, presuming the the yearly inflation has been 5%, prices would have only inflated by 25% over the last 5 years. But this would have still been offset by the 50% decrease due to a stronger Australian dollar. So what’s left?

Profit! Or mysterious surprise! Either Microsoft Australia is trying to juice the Australian public bad or they’re hiding a gold nugget in every box of Windows Vista. I’m betting on the latter. And that’s why they have yet to publically reveal the product box design for Windows Vista, because it’s going to have a special case for the nugget. Or, maybe this is the Windows Ultimate Extra surprise they’ve been talking about?

Update: I’ve just received an insider tip from a paper clip that a kilogram of bananas are also bundled with Windows Vista, setting the value of Vista well beyond its recommended retail price.

22 insightful thoughts

  1. Like XP wasn’t expensive enough? I know that if these prices are real, I won’t be upgrading to Vista any time soon, and if I do it’ll only be through some affordable, but unfortunately illegal means.

    On the other hand… whats with with the Flash based title and the normal text based one? The Flash one is ultra blurry too…

  2. It’s the fuel prices of course. Microsoft are going to ship the Windows Vista CDs in a ship from the US, drop them off somewhere near Cape York and then ship them by road-train around the country. Plus I think their trucks run on Premium. 😉

  3. Perhaps Microsoft has been taken over by a conglomorate of Shell, BP, Mobil and Exxon? 🙂

  4. I thought The US Conversion Price Was a Bit Cheap I better Start Saving for The for the bannana’s uhh i mean Vista Ultimate Ed’

  5. LOL with the banana! Oh i get it. The product is going ‘gold’ soon and it will cost as much as purchasing the ‘Bananas Ultimate Edition’ crate from the market 😀

  6. Not quite. There is a riduculous price for bananas in Australia at the moment due to a Tropical Cyclone that wiped out 80% of banana plantations in the country early this year

  7. As an Australian and someone who’s supported Vista (Longhorn) for the past 5 years I’m pretty freaking annoyed.

    This is ridiculous, there better be some massively discounted OEM or Student price I can get.

  8. Not to mention MS already has a great deal with it’s other product… Office 2k3 Student and Teacher edition where you can install it on up to three computers.
    How much will it cost a family that may have a desktop, an MCE computer and two laptops to upgrade to Vista?!

  9. United Kingdom Pricing

    Microsoft Windows Vista Home (Premium Edition) £184.99 from, $159.00 US compared to about £85 converted.

    Microsoft Windows Vista Business £250.00 from, $299.00 US compared to about £160 converted.

    Microsoft Windows Vista Home (Basic Edition) £154.99 from, $199.00 US compared to about £115 converted.

    Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate £325.00 from, $399.00 US compared to about £214 converted.

    Sure inflation has to be considered but still UK is being ripped off too…

  10. Wow okay that sucks!!! If that is the price that Microsoft is selling in OZ..Imagine how much would it cost in Malaysia? Man it is going to **** expensive!!! Bugger!!!

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  12. I’m not usually one to pirate software but I think it’s deserved in this case unless there is a really cheap student/OEM version. It’s an outrage!

  13. Well this is what New Zealand gets for having one of the lowest piracy rates in the world. Mircosoft probably thinks that since we arent used to pirating they bend us over the table and have there way with us.

    I for one will not put up with it, mircosoft, here is a bit of advice DONT OVER CHARGE YOUR PAYING CUSTOMERS WHEN A “FREE” VERSION IS ONLY A GOOGLE AWAY.

  14. What do you expect from a monopoly?

    Anyway thank god for Apple. Mac OS X Tiger… only $200 full price or $130 with student discount (exactly the same edition).

  15. I think more companies should support linux! Its free and its a danm good system. If more companies did that then we would not need microsoft!! 😉

  16. For all of you that are talking about pirating Vista, you should check out Microsofts new plans for you guys. I’m not saying it will be impossible, but it will be harder. All versions must be activated including the VL/Corporate versions. Vista also watches for system files to be tampered with, good luck with the key gens. Don’t think your product key is only “A Google Away”, Microsoft can block Vista keys known to be pirated. If your system is found to have any of these problems, you have 30 days to purchase a legal key and enter it, or you computer goes into Reduced Functionality Mode. In RFM, you are allowed to login to your computer, but have no Start Menu, no background. The only program you are allowed to run is Internet Explorer, which you can use to purchase your licence, and after one hour, you’re logged out without notice.

  17. One addition:
    If your key you use to install is later found out to be pirated your computer will enter RFM, not just the people currently trying to use the key to install.

  18. Why would anyone want to upgrade straight away to Vista anyway ?. MS don’t have a brilliant track record with first releases. Add to this the known hardware incompatibility issues, excessive pricing, high networking overheads and PC hardware requirements and you have a woeful scenario for the average man in the street.

  19. Thanks to the pricing and quality of Vista, it really makes economical sense now to switch to a Mac. Oh wait, a MacBook Pro costs at least AUD3199 in Australia but only AUD2600 in the US, so that’s a markup of AUD600, dammit!!!

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