Discussion:
[slim] Australians being screwed on price??
smc2911
2008-02-06 05:11:23 UTC
Permalink
Up until *very* recently it was possible to order Squeezeboxes (etc)
from the SlimDevices website and effectively get the US price
(converted at the current AUD/USD exchange rate). That option seems to
have disappeared (I assume deliberately) and it looks like the only way
to order the Duet is via the Logitech Australian site. However, not only
does it look like you cannot pre-order from that site, but the cost is
A$599.95 which, at current exchange rates, is around US$530. US$130
seems like a very hefty premium to pay. Even the Squeezeboxes (which
friends and family have bought online in the past on my recommendation)
are being sold at the equivalent of US$355. This is not quite as bad,
but still a bit of a gouge (18% premium as opposed to 33%). The
Transporter does not seem to be available at all on the Australian
Logitech site.

With this sort of pricing, I find it hard to see the Duet doing well
downunder.


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mvalera
2008-02-06 05:25:14 UTC
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I feel your pain, but now that we're part of Logitech exchange rates no
longer factor in. Each region sets it's own price. Prices are set to
market rates.

This is a fact of life, have you ever compared prices on cars from AU
to the US? Do you hold it against (insert any car company here) that
their prices are way cheaper in the US? We're not a start-up anymore,
we're part of a large multinational company and that's how business is
done.

How much does a Sonos system cost? Price that and get back to us.


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smc2911
2008-02-06 06:11:35 UTC
Permalink
Well, that was a slap in the face!

I don't think that comparison with cars is reasonable: the cost of
shipping a car means that buying outside your local market is not
practical. For small consumer goods, on the other hand, it is
completely practical to buy anywhere in the world and ship. Amazon is
hardly a start-up and I can buy books online from Amazon in the US (or
the UK), and get the local rates and pay shipping and they're hardly a
start-up. Same applies to many other products. Even in the case of cars
US or European retailers would happily sell me a car, I'd just have to
pay all the costs of getting it here (including duties etc). I don't
see why you can't have a bit of channel competition.

As far as Sonos is concerned, despite the price difference, from what
I'm seeing, they are happily out-selling Squeezeboxes here (I've
witnessed my local retailer, which stocks both Squeezeboxes and Sonos
extolling the virtues of the Sonos to a customer without even
mentioning the Squeezebox). I far prefer the Squeezebox, so I think
this is a shame, but while you might think that the price increase is
"the way business is done", I suspect it will not help you sell more
product out here.


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haunyack
2008-02-06 06:43:52 UTC
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mvalera;266039 Wrote:
> I feel your pain.
Sure you do.
> We're not a start-up anymore, we're part of a large multinational
> company and that's how business is done..
That hurts...do you feel my pain?

Multi-Conglomerate-Corporate-Industrial-Geo-Political Gibberish!
I meant to say bullsh??, but I think one more censor may get me
banned.

Do you feel smc2911 pain?
Uh-Huh - sure you do.
.


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tricka
2008-02-06 07:04:54 UTC
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Dear MValera
I found your reply highly offensive.
Sincerely
T


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bernt
2008-02-06 07:45:47 UTC
Permalink
With current rate

Logitech Sweden, Squeezebox Duet 629$

Logitech Sweden, Squeezebox 3 (Classic) 472$

Other company Sweden, Squeezebox 3 (Classic) 354$

So I waite before I buy until the duet show up at decent price on other
company.


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djonez
2008-02-06 08:06:11 UTC
Permalink
I have seen the same discussion on the bookeen ereader site and they
were polite enough to explain that the european prices included vat and
that differnet warranties and restocking fees were factored in. That was
an intelligent explanation. Telling people that this is the way big
business operates and to get over it belittles people.


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ikruspan
2008-02-06 08:26:22 UTC
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bernt;266063 Wrote:
> With current rate
> Logitech Sweden, Squeezebox Duet 629$
> Logitech Sweden, Squeezebox 3 (Classic) 472$
> Other company Sweden, Squeezebox 3 (Classic) 354$
> So I waite before I buy until the duet show up at decent price on other
> company.

Price from logitech web site:
Logitech Squeezebox™ Classic 299EUR, that is 448 USD

No, I will not buy my 4th squeezebox for this HIGH price. :(


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Sike
2008-02-06 09:37:29 UTC
Permalink
I still order from the US. Get a friend in the states and get it shipped
to him and shipped over. It just makes things more difficult.

The nice thing about living in Europe is that the dollar is extremly
weak at the moment and is not going to recover soon.

On a differnt note, on other forums you can see how Americans are
complaining about prices in Euros. Count yourselves lucky that you live
in a country that has a strong economy.

BTW: You can order a car in the US. Getting a 1/2 shipping container
(which will fit a car) from New Jersy to Rotterdam costs about 700€.
Getting the car to meet European sound and emission standars is another
1000€ ... you can buy a pretty cheap Audi/Merc/BMW/Volvo/etc. that way
and lots of people are doing that. Linking prices prices to consumer
markets is very hard for a supplier to jusify. I have friends in the US
doing "regular" desk jobs who earn a lot more that surgeons in
Switzerland. Another arugment would be the Big Mac Index
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big-Mac-Index

It is very unwise to try and explain to a consumer, with todays
globalisation, why he has to pay 50% more in Europe for an electronic
item produced in China after tax.

It is much easier to explain why a Big Mac is cheaper..

If Logitech had consumed Slim completly I would probably switched to
something else or just never updated my Slimserver. Logitech's support
is OK for mice and such (Then again, what can go wrong?) but support
for anything else is not really up to standard: Harmony.... (works for
some, but not for others . go on .. have a google)

I started of buying the slimp3 and realy enjoy the lever of support and
innovation behind this product. I presume that when Logitech took over
they made sure that Slimdevices would retain a certain amount of
autonomy - this is a good thing.


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markushk
2008-02-06 11:08:04 UTC
Permalink
Having lived in Australia I can understand the frustration.

Crazy as it might sound though it does happen globally. I recently
purchased a Leveno notebook from the US and had it posted back to China
to save USD$1000.

I suggest you source them through a OS retailer and have them shipped.
Alternately you could try expansys who specialise in grey-market
products (they have an Australian website).

If you want a retail contact from HK, I can probarly find my receipt
and give you the details of the company. I'm sure either way you should
save a heap.

Regards
Markus


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amey01
2008-02-06 11:30:43 UTC
Permalink
That's just living in Australia. Just look at the Benchmark DAC - $1,799
when the exchange rate was .50 and now that it is .92 how much does the
DAC1 cost? $1,799.

Importers/Distributors are the first to scream when the exchange rate
goes down "Oh, the dollar - prices are going up", but when it goes up
they just pocket the difference! The "helping hand" they get from
manufacturers doesn't help either.

Just buy from a US retailer and have them ship it to you.


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egd
2008-02-06 07:16:12 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266039 Wrote:
> We're not a start-up anymore, we're part of a large multinational
> company and that's how business is done.
>
> How much does a Sonos system cost? Price that and get back to us.

What an arrogant load of twaddle...you're sure Managing your Online
Communities.


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egd
2008-02-06 07:39:32 UTC
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mvalera;266058 Wrote:
> Do we have that all out of our systems now?
>
> Al the whining doesn't change the fact that each region sets their own
> prices. The prices set are reflective of the local markets. They are
> not in any way based on exchange rates.
>
> You may not agree with it, but that's not screwing the customer. You don't get it do you...it's not the message that's offended, it's
your manner of delivery. There, now it's out of my system.


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mvalera
2008-02-06 07:36:30 UTC
Permalink
Do we have that all out of our systems now?

Al the whining doesn't change the fact that each region sets their own
prices. The prices set are reflective of the local markets. They are
not in any way based on exchange rates.

You may not agree with it, but that's not screwing the customer.


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mvalera

Michael Valera
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haunyack
2008-02-06 07:44:07 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266058 Wrote:
> Do we have that all out of our systems now?

No.
I have further remarks saved just for you.
No, it's not "all out of" my system.

Go back under your desk and let your more capable underlings handle the
public forum.

.


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servies
2008-02-06 08:14:12 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266058 Wrote:
> Do we have that all out of our systems now?
>
> Al the whining doesn't change the fact that each region sets their own
> prices. The prices set are reflective of the local markets. They are
> not in any way based on exchange rates.
>
> You may not agree with it, but that's not screwing the customer.
bernt;266063 Wrote:
> With current rate
>
> Logitech Sweden, Squeezebox Duet 629$
>
> Logitech Sweden, Squeezebox 3 (Classic) 472$
>
> Other company Sweden, Squeezebox 3 (Classic) 354$
>
> So I waite before I buy until the duet show up at decent price on other
> company.

Kaboom... not very reflective of the local market, isn't it... Just
seeing the above: dump those regional branches, especially the shop
departments... They're costing you money, because at those prices only
idiots would buy them directly from logitech...

To be honest.. The dutch Logitech shop has the same prices as normal
dutch shops...


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olc
2008-02-06 14:59:07 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266058 Wrote:
> Do we have that all out of our systems now?
>
> Al the whining doesn't change the fact that each region sets their own
> prices. The prices set are reflective of the local markets. They are
> not in any way based on exchange rates.
>
> You may not agree with it, but that's not screwing the customer.

But why does each region set its own prices?

Doesn't gouging in one region lead to transhipping? Why shouldn't one
buy in the US and then sell in Australia, say?

BTW, what was offensive is the tone and attitude.


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oktup
2008-02-06 16:33:50 UTC
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mvalera;266058 Wrote:
> Do we have that all out of our systems now?
>
> Al the whining doesn't change the fact that each region sets their own
> prices. The prices set are reflective of the local markets. They are
> not in any way based on exchange rates.
>
> You may not agree with it, but that's not screwing the customer.

I am compelled to reply due to your provocative tone ;)

It's all well and good to set prices according to local markets, but
what is *also* being done is an artificially imposed trade barrier (by
restricting who can order from the web-store). In a proper free market
situation, the customer would be free to buy directly from whichever
market they chose.

But unfortunately, although the good old multinationals are happy to be
globalist when demanding unfettered access to cheap labour and
production, they're strangely anti-competitive when it comes to
allowing the customers to play by the same rules.

Hence some of the whining, I suppose ;P


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gandt
2008-02-06 17:14:11 UTC
Permalink
I was not going to get involved in this before reading mvaleras original
note since I doubt Ill buy a duet anytime soon. But I am a very loyal
customer, read the forums, own multiple machines and have some
emotional committment to what happens to the company.

The reason I have an emotional committment to one company and not
another is complex but not necessarily because I am some kind of
deluded European socalist. I believe the Squeezebox to embody some
values. Obvious ones like quality and excellence but less obvious ones
like the committment and effort of the slim devices workforce (as
embodied by Sean) Its not that I delude myself they are anything other
than a commercial company, rather that i take them to be a certain kind
of commercial company i.e. one that takes a longish term view of
customer relationships in the belief that it will do better in the long
run. Thats some explanation of the thriving community the squeezebox has
here and similar products (which have probably had more marketing money
behind them) do not. In turn the thriving community leads to the rich
variety of additional squeezebox features that are derived from the
community itself and in trn enahnce the community.

I AM NOT a deluded fool for taking slimdevices to have some values
beyond "what can we get away with", Historically it certainly had
values beyond that and indeed semmed positivley to believe that its
relationship with its customers was part of what was going to make its
prodycts special.. I FEEL that for reasons expressed above by Oktup the
policy of PREVENTING us from buying direct at whatever regional price
(plus tax plus shipping) seemed best value to us was one big symbol of
the slimdevices I imagined I knew. OF COURSE they had local
distributors who might be setting local rates but we could always buy
direct. No longer.

Now the pathetic thing to say is say "I'll never buy another Slim
product again"

a) it may not be true
b) they might not care even a little bit

but commercial success and failure is often about the marginal
differences - the slight emotional engagement we have with one company
and not another - Slimdevices loses that at its peril.

And finally Mvalera - really - you come over as the worst kind of one
dimensional capitalism-is-faultless-so-shutup-socialist-whiners
apologist. That can't be good for business.


Graham


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shinyspoon
2008-02-06 17:29:13 UTC
Permalink
Hi,

Quick calculation:
$399 = £203.41 + EU duty @ 5% 213.58 + 17.5% VAT = £250.95 without
shipping costs.
I pre-ordered DUET for £270 (with £9 discount code) Free Next Day
Delivery.

Price seems to be fair, from the above.

Regards,
PeteJ


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y360
2008-02-06 19:30:46 UTC
Permalink
There are commercial forwarding services which can ship a US order
overseas, e.g. http://www.maillinkplus.com


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ds2021
2008-02-06 19:42:15 UTC
Permalink
Graham, well said.

Mvalera, you should consider yourself less as the disciplinarian for
the Slim Devices community, and more as the PR face of the company.


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egd
2008-02-06 20:21:13 UTC
Permalink
Ok, I think we've beaten up enough on the guy. If he hasn't gotten the
message re his behaviours/ attitude by now he's never going to get it
(one can only hope...). Don't expect an apology/ clarification either,
I doubt one will be forthcoming.

Fact is, whether we like it or not, SD is not SD anymore and
distribution via Logitech's distribution channels was inevitable. Use
the Internet, order from wherever you find things the cheapest and have
it shipped to your home, wherever that may be.


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herljus
2008-02-06 07:42:50 UTC
Permalink
I am not sure that I follow the company reasoning here - is it that
Australians are so stupid that they will pay >25% more than an American
for exactly the same product? I was able to purchase a Transporter a
couple of months ago from the US site and have it shipped to Australia
without hastle and I love it. Today I tried to pre-order a Duet and a
Controller but found the website locked down for Australian consumers.
I refuse to support this ridiculous situation and will either wait until
I am next in the US or not bother out of principal. I have no similar
issue with CDs, books, PCs, or other consumer goods, all of which I
purchase from the US if the producing company wants to offer tiered
pricing by region


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mvalera
2008-02-06 08:02:27 UTC
Permalink
The Slimdevices.com store is has been limited to the Americas and a few
select Asian countries since the end of the Summer. It was not a recent
change.

That we continue to operate the .com at all has actually been a bit of
a minor miracle. You may have noticed that Logitech operates its own
website. Support for our own website is not universally held inside
Logi.

You may feel I was being blunt, and you may not agree with different
prices in different countries, but kids that's the way things are. It's
the way they've been for several months, and it's the way it's going to
be from now on.


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egd
2008-02-06 08:08:06 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266067 Wrote:
> ...but kids that's the way things are. Something tells me you're barely capable of single-loop learning...


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gerph
2008-02-06 09:03:39 UTC
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mvalera;266067 Wrote:
> The Slimdevices.com store is has been limited to the Americas and a few
> select Asian countries since the end of the Summer. It was not a recent
> change.
>
> That we continue to operate the .com at all has actually been a bit of
> a minor miracle. You may have noticed that Logitech operates its own
> website. Support for our own website is not universally held inside
> Logi.
>
> You may feel I was being blunt, and you may not agree with different
> prices in different countries, but kids that's the way things are. It's
> the way they've been for several months, and it's the way it's going to
> be from now on.

I'm not the best with dealing with people, but I think that calling
yourself Lord Of The Web and then telling people bluntly that their
complaints aren't going to help and that you're treating them like
children may not be the best way to deal with an online community.


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Mike-B
2008-02-06 09:12:02 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266067 Wrote:
>
> You may feel I was being blunt, and you may not agree with different
> prices in different countries, but kids that's the way things are. It's
> the way they've been for several months, and it's the way it's going to
> be from now on.

Ouch. Well there it is.
If any of you were wondering at which point everything that was
actually good about Slim Devices - and their support for the community
around it - would start to become a burden to Logitech, this series of
terse replies from Mr Valera tells me it's now. Knowing he's basically
powerless to effect any change further up the Logitech chain on these
sorts of comments, he lashes out at the community instead.

Mr Valera's comment about how Logitech feels about the slimdevices.com
domain also gives a bit of an insight into what direction things are
moving in. Shame really.


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mflint
2008-02-06 09:33:58 UTC
Permalink
Hang on... the original poster asked a straightforward question, and
received a straightforward answer. I don't see how that is in any way
offensive - don't shoot the messenger.

In fact, the only confrontational part of the whole discussion (as far
as I can see) is the very first bit: "Australians being screwed on
price??". The thread hardly got off to a good start.

Having a go at Mike because he can't change prices (or achieve World
Peace) ain't going to help. If you seriously do have a problem with
pricing (and I would be minded to agree - as a Brit I'm used to similar
pricing differences) then you need to target the right people: email
Logitech and pester your local distributors.

Alternatively, get a friendly US resident to ship you one. Buy one on
Ebay US. Or buy a €10 return flight to the States and buy your
transporter there.

Matthew


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mattybain
2008-02-06 09:47:32 UTC
Permalink
mflint;266098 Wrote:
> Hang on... the original poster asked a straightforward question, and
> received a straightforward answer. I don't see how that is in any way
> offensive - don't shoot the messenger.
>
> In fact, the only confrontational part of the whole discussion (as far
> as I can see) is the very first bit: "Australians being screwed on
> price??". The thread hardly got off to a good start.
>
> Matthew

What being called kids and being told to put up or shut up is
non-confrontational?

Sadly it does seem like SlimDevices are being swallowed by the
corporate bemoth and this attitude of screw you just confirms it.

Yes Logitech are taking the piss with European / Aus pricing, all we
can do is vote with our wallets and never buy another Logitech device.


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(http://www.last.fm/user/MattyBain/?chartstyle=recenttracks3)
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olc
2008-02-06 15:10:31 UTC
Permalink
mattybain;266103 Wrote:
> What being called kids and being told to put up or shut up is
> non-confrontational?
>
> Sadly it does seem like SlimDevices are being swallowed by the
> corporate bemoth and this attitude of screw you just confirms it.
>
> Yes Logitech are taking the piss with European / Aus pricing, all we
> can do is vote with our wallets and never buy another Logitech device.


Or maybe Logitech/Slim Devices picked the wrong guy to explain the
logic of pricing (because no logic was given).


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ModelCitizen
2008-02-06 20:55:26 UTC
Permalink
Is the Lord of the Web, the laughing forum maestro, online face of
Logitec/SlimDevices going to comment again? It'd be useful for Michael
to address the controversy he's stirred up with his remarks I guess.

This is a long thread, generated in a very short time indeed.

MC


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herljus
2008-02-06 21:57:05 UTC
Permalink
to all those who have suggested that I contact Logitech directly this
was the first place I tried but besides for product support (you need
to quote serial numbers) they do not offer an online contact. They may
not want this type of feedback? The Asia Pacific headquarters is in
Hong Kong - perhaps they need to do on the ground market research?

I have written a letter to be posted - if anyone knows of a contact
email address for I am happy to use that instead


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kdf
2008-02-07 07:07:27 UTC
Permalink
I'm surprised that some people are coming off so shocked here. I know
some names have been around long enough to know this ISN'T all a
logitech thing. Complaining about pricing has been here since before I
came along. In fact, I've even been part of it going back to 2001 when I
paid 100% premium on SliMP3 when I'm only 2.5 hours north by plan from
SD home base.

I'm part of a big company now myself, and it has many divisions around
the world with their own contracts for sales. Product development
creates a product and each regional sales "company" does their own work
at creating a market locally and selling the product. Other regions do
not interfere.

I'm not sure how "kids" is more offensive than the implication of being
"screwed". As one who sits on both sides (user and dev) I think there
are thicker skins needed on both sides. Users aren't the only ones who
are allowed to be frustrated.

As early responding trolls in this tread have already posted in other
threads, offensive language..."get over it". This thread has been
inflamed by early trolls as much as anyone else.

No doubt, I'm now a target too, but I've been there. But the main
point is, if you really hate the pricing then attack the local
operating company. Now that the Canadian Dollar is at par with the US,
there is a lot of that going on in Canada. Please do the same in your
region. Prices are market driven, and you are the market. Drive away
folks.

-kdf


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gandt
2008-02-07 08:24:52 UTC
Permalink
a) No not trolls - god knows i've seen plenty of them in the Audiophile
forum - ANNOYED PEOPLE - not being BEING ANNOYING

b) The "market forces shall not be disobeyed" argument which is a
version of the "if you dont like the way we do things dont buy our
stuff" retort - not the point. It used to be possible to (hey global
capitalism hoorah!) buy your squeezebox driect from the company and
take your lumps with sales tax and shipping on top. Sometimes this was
a good idea sometimes not but it seemed a fair enbough retort to
anybody complaining about local prices. BY STOPPING THIS we (us UK
types) HAVE to pay (yeah i know a few complex exceptions involving
shipping and maybe the occasional US distributor that will ship abroad)
the local distributor price which is often marked up way beyond US plus
tax plus shipping. Why? Cos THEY THINK THATS WHAT THE MARKET WILL
STAND. (provided of course they cant shop around and see what other
markets are paying.)

c) Nothing new in any of this of course, its pretty common behaviour
but as i said above some of us imagined (dumb huh) that Slimdevices had
a different view - not because they were not a properly self interested
commercial company but because their business depended upon/encouraged
"community goodwill" reinforcing the product and its development as
part of its business model. As you know - it has worked well.

d) Slimdevices is favoured. It has a customer base which is very loyal
and INVOLVED - this is not just because the product is good its because
of a bunch of slightly intangible stuff which is evidenced at least
partly by the very length of this thread! People Care and "hey thats
capitalism folks" is not an adequate response.


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kdf
2008-02-07 08:35:09 UTC
Permalink
On 7-Feb-08, at 12:24 AM, gandt wrote:

>
> a) No not trolls - god knows i've seen plenty of them in the
> Audiophile
> forum - ANNOYED PEOPLE - not being BEING ANNOYING
>
yeah...keep better track of the other forums.

> b) The "market forces shall not be disobeyed" argument which is a
> version of the "if you dont like the way we do things dont buy our
> stuff" retort - not the point.
missing the point. it's about contracts to regional divisions. When
you have a real job, you'll run into it (oh see, THAT's a troll)

>
>
> c) Nothing new in any of this of course,
so not new. so the pretended shock over he issue is just pathetic
(notice I'm not offering patience toward the issue. it's because I
don't have to, and have done this far too much)
>
>
> d) Slimdevices is favoured. It has a customer base which is very loyal
> and INVOLVED

a matter of opinion. I'd say many things have changed since it was
just SD, not just the marketing. users' attitudes are not conducive
to volunteers either, frankly. oops....forgot I'm not allowed to say
that.

-kdf
>
>
>
> --
> gandt
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
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>
> _______________________________________________
> discuss mailing list
> discuss-***@public.gmane.org
> http://lists.slimdevices.com/lists/listinfo/discuss
gandt
2008-02-07 09:12:40 UTC
Permalink
kdf;266529 Wrote:
> On 7-Feb-08, at 12:24 AM, gandt wrote:
>
> > b) The "market forces shall not be disobeyed" argument which is a
> > version of the "if you dont like the way we do things dont buy our
> > stuff" retort - not the point.
> missing the point. it's about contracts to regional divisions. When
> you have a real job, you'll run into it (oh see, THAT's a troll)
>
>
> What is this some kind of Postmodern trolling in which you
> simultaneously do it and refer to the fact that you are doing it? Its
> still a pointlessly rude response to a post which was obviously not
> just about winding people up.


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kdf
2008-02-07 09:23:05 UTC
Permalink
On 7-Feb-08, at 1:12 AM, gandt wrote:
>>
>>
>> What is this some kind of Postmodern trolling in which you
>> simultaneously do it and refer to the fact that you are doing it? Its
>> still a pointlessly rude response to a post which was obviously not
>> just about winding people up.


read the thread. that's all you need.
if you don't see it, then, well, do as i have advised: contact the
local distro.

again, I'll point out that this is a very old discussion, with the
same outward results.
arguing here, well, it does fall into the realm of the stupid.
-kdf
gandt
2008-02-07 09:44:35 UTC
Permalink
Well I agree that this thread is now more heat than light so I agree
that more comment would be stupid. Now about those cryogenically frozen
cables that yield staggering new highs and are as if a veil was lifted
from the music...



gt


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morris_minor
2008-02-07 08:38:57 UTC
Permalink
kdf;266511 Wrote:
> Prices are market driven, and you are the market. Drive away folks.
>
> -kdf

egd;266387 Wrote:
> Fact is, whether we like it or not, SD is not SD anymore and
> distribution via Logitech's distribution channels was inevitable. Use
> the Internet, order from wherever you find things the cheapest and have
> it shipped to your home, wherever that may be.

I wish the SBC was cheaper in the UK right now. But sooner or later
some retailer will undercut Logitech - and then I'll go for it. I have
a number of Logitech computer peripherals - none of which came direct
from Logitech, all of which were cheaper than their online price.

SD is now Logitech. We should be grateful that they're being allowed to
develop their products in the same was as before, using open
source/community input. But marketing has moved to a whole different
ball game. People who don't like how global companies operate in the
global economy should take a reality check - and get off Mike's back.
IMNSHO.


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bossanova808
2008-02-07 08:57:20 UTC
Permalink
Cut mvalera some slack - they're about to launch a major new product and
likely they're all a bit tired and on edge.

Sure he could have phrased it better but ultimately he's right and you
all know it. Pricing will *always* be set by what the market can bear
and if you think otherwise you just don't understand the world you're
living in.

As an Aussie, it's worth pointing out I paid $248 Aus dollars
(delivered and inclusive of GST) for my last SB3. That's a reasonable
price in any market and even at the standard price here (around $310)
the device in incredible value.

Likely the duet will very quickly be discounted similarly. If you pay
full retail for electronics in Australia you're monumentally lacking in
the brain department.

Have you never written a forum post you didn't phrase the best? Cast
the first stone and all that.

(I also query the Sonos is selling wonderfully in AU thing. It's a
whole different price league and I've seen online stores claiming to
have >100 squeezeboxes in stock at particular times, so I'm guessing
they're moving quite nicely).


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smc2911
2008-02-07 09:45:13 UTC
Permalink
bossanova808;266536 Wrote:
> As an Aussie, it's worth pointing out I paid $248 Aus dollars (delivered
> and inclusive of GST) for my last SB3. That's a reasonable price in any
> market and even at the standard price here (around $310) the device in
> incredible value.If you check the Logitech Australia site the SB3 is $400, so you can't
have bought yours there!
> Likely the duet will very quickly be discounted similarly. If you pay
> full retail for electronics in Australia you're monumentally lacking in
> the brain department.
Essentially you are saying that only a fool would buy from direct
Logitech here in Australia, which is pretty much the gist of my
original post. To me, that seems to be a strange way to do business as
profit margins on direct sales are higher than through resellers.
Still, if Logitech don't want to sell anything through their website,
that is their prerogative.

Anyway, I promise I will now stop flogging this very dead horse.

P.S. kdf as noted in an earlier post, the Logitech Australia website
provides no contact details (phone, email), only a postal address.


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markushk
2008-02-07 12:42:53 UTC
Permalink
Okay, final post for me on this topic:

http://www.staticice.com.au/cgi-bin/search.cgi?q=squeezebox

Why not use the best internet price trawler in Aus.


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y360
2008-02-07 14:58:42 UTC
Permalink
You should all buy a plain ticket to Israel where even at the current
weak US$ exchange rate the Squeezebox3 is priced at just $200 from
their national Telecom company Bezeq. The price reflects a 50%
discount which has been in effect since October 2007. At that time
their Sheqel wasn't so strong, resulting in a local price of just
US$150, probably the lowest in the world

http://www.bezeq.co.il/Cultures/he-IL/Bezeq/internet/B-Music/prices.htm


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george_k
2008-02-07 18:55:10 UTC
Permalink
Hey guys just chiming in here as I couldn't help not posting after
reading some of this stuff.

A little background on me:
I hold a marketing/management position for a large multinational in a
very different industry. After reading mvalera's I am first and
foremost appalled by his responses, his posts definitely broke all the
unwritten rules of how to communicate with the customer.

Note mvalera: These "kids" pay your salary and pension, you need them,
they don't need you.

Note to Sean & Co at Slimdevices: The "kid" comment would be enough
basis for me to terminate this person's employment.

Note to the original poster: You did the right thing in voicing your
concern/feelings, it's too bad that they seem to have fallen on deaf
ears. Maybe a different communication channel would have been more
appropriate. The good news I guess is that there's no law specifying
you *have* to buy in Australia and I encourage that you go ahead, maybe
if a whole lot of you do the same Logitech will realize that there's a
pricing disconnect.


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Phil Leigh
2008-02-07 20:19:48 UTC
Permalink
I feel sorry for Mike. I didn't think the "kids" quote was out of order
- it's just a turn of phrase.

And regional pricing has been and will always be a fact of life - get
over it or get round it. Anyone remember BEFORE we had the Internet?
Nobody even knew what the price differentials were...

For me the most worrying thing in all of this was the comment about
Logi not approving of SD having its own web site...I can feel the
"corporate monster" stirring. Yeuch.


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mvalera
2008-02-07 21:04:19 UTC
Permalink
Phil Leigh;266754 Wrote:
>
> For me the most worrying thing in all of this was the comment about
> Logi not approving of SD having its own web site...I can feel the
> "corporate monster" stirring. Yeuch.

I said "some" people didn't get it. We obviously won the battle.

Don't worry, we're not going away. We'll even be launching a new look
and feel in the next few months.


--
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Michael Valera
Online Communities Manager
Logitech Streaming Media Systems
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Phil Leigh
2008-02-07 23:19:48 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266782 Wrote:
> I said "some" people didn't get it. We obviously won the battle.
>
> Don't worry, we're not going away. We'll even be launching a new look
> and feel in the next few months.

Cool - good to know, Mike


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gorman
2008-02-07 23:00:30 UTC
Permalink
george_k;266721 Wrote:
> Note mvalera: These "kids" pay your salary and pension, you need them,
> they don't need you.You're right.> Note to Sean & Co at Slimdevices: The "kid" comment would be enough
> basis for me to terminate this person's employment.Wow... I'm amazed by the ease with which you're dishing out a comment
like this. Come on... everybody can have a bad day. Terminating his
employment seems really inappropriate to me. Suggesting it on an
internet forum the apotheosis of ridiculous.


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ModelCitizen
2008-02-07 23:24:30 UTC
Permalink
Yeah, that's bit harsh.. perhaps just a little training course in
customer relations or PR might be sufficient to help Michael refrain
from repeating such a naked display of disrespect for his company's
customers, prospective customers, third party developers and the
community in general... in Logitecs own public forums.

MC


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adamslim
2008-02-08 00:29:14 UTC
Permalink
ModelCitizen;266844 Wrote:
> perhaps just a little training course in customer relations

Rule 1: empathise with the complainant, better than 'yeah I feel your
pain'

A simple "I agree, but to maintain steady price points and protect
customers from exchange rate fluctuations, we need to build in a little
fat - and don't forget import duties and sales taxes like VAT. We also
need to make sure that we preserve a good relationship with our
distros, so in practice the direct price is sometimes higher than the
'street' price. I suggest that you wait until they're in good supply
over there, and see if the price isn't a bit better than it currently
seems" would have defused the situation :)


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others

SB+, EAR V20, Living Voice OBX-R2s plus some other stuff
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smc2911
2008-02-06 10:02:48 UTC
Permalink
mflint;266098 Wrote:
> Hang on... the original poster asked a straightforward question, and
> received a straightforward answer. I don't see how that is in any way
> offensive - don't shoot the messenger.
"How much does a Sonos system cost? Price that and get back to us."
"Al the whining doesn't change the fact that each region sets their own
prices."
"kids that's the way things are"
As Matty notes above, there is more here than a "straightforward
answer" here, there's a sprinkling of attitude too. If Michael has no
influence on pricing, he should have just said that rather than trying
to defend it when the evidence clearly shows that Logitech are selling
their products on their Australian site at significant premium not only
to the US price but to local resellers.


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mflint
2008-02-06 10:29:59 UTC
Permalink
We're talking about a business here, not a charity. As such, it has a
business model which works on market forces, regional sales strategies
and suchlike. The two major driving forces of a competitive business
are, in no particular order, shareholders and the balance sheet. That's
it.

We'd all like to think that the customers and the technology come
first, but that ain't so. It's not run from Sean's garage anymore, and
Sean's dog gave up soldering Slimp3's long ago.

Compared to a few years ago, the hardware has improved, the software
has improved beyond recognition and it sounds like the support system
and warranties have improved too. I don't see how that's a step
backwards.

> How much does a Sonos system cost? Price that and get back to us
We all quickly guessed that the Duet was being pitched against Sonos -
and many (me included, and a load of folks on the Sonos forums too) are
pretty excited about that. But now it's on the forum in black-and-white,
and someone suggests we might make a direct price comparison, why cry
foul?

> all we can do is vote with our wallets and never buy another Logitech
> device
Well, good luck with that. I'm not sure it'd be the right strategy for
me.


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egd
2008-02-06 10:34:45 UTC
Permalink
mflint;266120 Wrote:
> The two major driving forces of a competitive business are, in no
> particular order, shareholders and the balance sheet.I'd argue cashflow comes before both, but I'm just being picky :P


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Mike-B
2008-02-06 11:36:21 UTC
Permalink
mflint;266120 Wrote:
> We're talking about a business here, not a charity. As such, it has a
> business model which works on market forces, regional sales strategies
> and suchlike.

Well yawn, thanks for the obvious statement.

The primary issue is whether or not Australia is being gouged on the
price. The answer is obviously yes. Furthermore, with the Transporter
not being available on the Logitech site for AUS customers one can only
assume that Australian customers are not a high priority. A shame, but
frankly no tthe end of the world. Nonetheless, it seems to me a post on
the Slim Devices forum would be the most appropriate place for someone
to voice thier concerns.
The issue I see here is that for a reply to those concerns (from a
company rep) to amount to little more that "Suck it up kid!", well I'm
sorry that is not good enough.
From my own experience managing the support department for company of a
similar size to Logitech, I would find Mr Valera's method of handling of
those complaints totally unacceptable. It's quite possible to be
sympathetic to a customers concerns, escalate the comment (no matter
how little attention it may get by his superiors) and leave it at that.


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smc2911
2008-02-06 11:45:55 UTC
Permalink
My sentiments exactly.


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MuckleEck
2008-02-06 12:25:04 UTC
Permalink
Talking about the difference between the slimdevices.com purchasing site
and the logitech.com one, why is it that I can only buy the black
transporter from Logitech in the UK but buy black or silver from
slimdevices in America?

and BTW the prices in the UK on the logitech website are higher than
other online sites by about 8%....


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Alasdair

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robroe
2008-02-06 14:32:33 UTC
Permalink
MuckleEck;266153 Wrote:
> Talking about the difference between the slimdevices.com purchasing site
> and the logitech.com one, why is it that I can only buy the black
> transporter from Logitech in the UK but buy black or silver from
> slimdevices in America?
>
> and BTW the prices in the UK on the logitech website are higher than
> other online sites by about 8%....

I'm glad to see that they have now dropped the price of the 'Classic'
to the same price as the other online retailers as it was previously
£40 more.

I was also going to ask why its not possible to buy the receiver and
controller seperately on the UK site, but I see that it isn't possible
on the slimdevices site either!

I'd have to say I'd agree that the earlier comments could have been
made a little better. I suspect this is maybe why some inside Logitech
may prefer to have just their bland corporate website rather than this
community. To state the obvious I think that would be a huge mistake on
their part as the community is one of the key strengths of this product
line.

I would prefer to buy direct from Slimdevices in the US if my 'local
market' was taking me for a ride, but I guess we still have the option
of buying from a reseller and having it shipped over. Presumably this
would be at a better price than slimdevices would be selling it for.


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Marc Sherman
2008-02-06 13:43:44 UTC
Permalink
Mike-B wrote:
>
> The primary issue is whether or not Australia is being gouged on the
> price. The answer is obviously yes. Furthermore, with the Transporter
> not being available on the Logitech site for AUS customers one can only
> assume that Australian customers are not a high priority. A shame, but
> frankly no tthe end of the world. Nonetheless, it seems to me a post on
> the Slim Devices forum would be the most appropriate place for someone
> to voice thier concerns.

Mike may have inflamed this discussion with the way he replied, but the
core message he was trying to get across was that, in fact, this is not
a very useful place to be posting about those concerns.

Like most multinationals, Logitech is structured in a way that the R&D
organization has very little impact on the regional sales organizations.
This forum is an organ of the R&D group that builds the SB line; they
don't have any say in how its sold in various parts of the world.

If you want your message heard by people who might actually be able to
do something about it, posting here won't help. Instead, you should
contact your local Logitech distributor's office, and explain to them
why you won't be buying product from them.

In a multinational, the different regions have to compete against each
other; that's why they've restricted the slimdevices.com website, so
that the US business unit won't cannibalize sales from the Asian and
EMEA BUs. So telling Logitech Australia that you plan to buy from
Logitech US through a middle man and have the unit shipped actually does
hurt them about as much as telling them that you'll buy from Sonos.

- Marc
radish
2008-02-06 14:12:41 UTC
Permalink
Let's face it, as people have been saying for quite some time the
practise of retail prices varying from one country to another is hardly
new or uncommon. I'm a brit living in the US so I've seen it from both
sides - yes it's nice that a lot of the gear I buy is cheaper over
here, but it still stings that I have to pay $3 for an imported can of
baked beans :) As has been mentioned there are lots of possible
reasons for the price difference, including but not limited to tax,
duty, increased cost of doing business in that country (rent, manpower
costs etc), price/availability of competitors, and of course plain old
higher margins. I don't know what the tax regime looks like in AUS but
in the UK it accounts for a large portion of the typical price
difference.

That aside, the complaints that the logitech site costs more than a
retailer are kind of ridiculous. In my experience going directly to the
manufacturer is almost never the cheapest way to buy something - SD has
historically been unusual and it's largely been because they were the
main distribution point. Now they're moving stock into the Logitech
channels and out to major retailers I would expect to see those
retailers cutting prices. I picked a couple of random examples -
Creative charge $89.99 for a 4GB Zen V Plus, Amazon has it for $79.99.
Or let's say I wanted a nice new Canon camcorder, I can get the VIXIA
HG10 direct for $1099 or from Amazon for $724.82. But I don't see the
point in complaining to Canon or Creative about this situation - if you
see the product discounted just be happy and buy it there!


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Khuli
2008-02-06 14:59:58 UTC
Permalink
radish;266185 Wrote:
> In my experience going directly to the manufacturer is almost never the
> cheapest way to buy something - SD has historically been unusual and
> it's largely been because they were the main distribution point.

Indeed. The manufacturer won't sell for less than the recommended
retail price, precisely because it cannot undercut its distributors (or
it soon won't have any). However, there is nothing to stop a distributor
accepting a smaller margin on a sale by selling below the RRP.

Note that this means that if the manufacturer and the distributor sell
for the same price, the manufacturer will make a bigger profit if you
buy from them rather than from the distributor...


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Mike-B
2008-02-06 14:25:30 UTC
Permalink
Marc Sherman;266173 Wrote:
>
> This forum is an organ of the R&D group that builds the SB line...
> - Marc

I couldn't disagree more. This forum has many different areas and I
believe we are in the General Discussion (Kitchen Sink even) forum.
It seems to me that it would be far more likely - and satisfactory in
terms of finding others that do or don't share your view - for a group
of non US-based customers to comment here on Logitech's excessive
margin than anywhere else.

Of course the company has a right to market its products how it sees
fit (what is it today with all the Business 101 grade observations)
however the consumer also has a right to seek the best price wherever
they may get it. Thankfully it's all too easy to do that these days and
although I'm sure Logitech may take a lot of prompting to make any
changes, perhaps if they were made aware of comments such as those from
smc2911 they might start to understand why so many people go to such
lengths to NOT buy from their local Logitech online store… perhaps
reduce that markup just a bit.

Regardless Mr Valera handled it extremely poorly for an individual of
his self-proclaimed status.


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Marc Sherman
2008-02-06 14:47:39 UTC
Permalink
Mike-B wrote:
>
> I couldn't disagree more. This forum has many different areas and I
> believe we are in the General Discussion (Kitchen Sink even) forum.
> It seems to me that it would be far more likely - and satisfactory in
> terms of finding others that do or don't share your view - for a group
> of non US-based customers to comment here on Logitech's excessive
> margin than anywhere else.

Sure, if all you want to do is rant and stir up bad feelings, post away.
If you want to actually accomplish something, though, you've got to talk
to the people who are actually making the decisions that make you angry.
Those people are not here.

- Marc
mflint
2008-02-06 14:12:55 UTC
Permalink
Mike-B;266140 Wrote:
> Well yawn, thanks for the obvious statement.
*sigh*

I'm not trying to inflame the situation, just wanted to point out that
it's unrealistic to expect prices in different regions to be broadly
similar, however much you (and me too) want it.

I can't explain why, not even when factoring in the often-quoted
"shipping"/"taxes"/"exchange rate risk" arguments we often hear. It's
just a fact of life. In the UK, as far as technology goes, $1=£1 for
most stuff, and has been for years.

The only possible reason is "if we can get away with charging more, we
will" - because that makes the bean-counters happy.

'msherman' put it better than me when he said
> If you want your message heard by people who might actually be able to
> do something about it, posting here won't help.


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gorman
2008-02-06 11:07:49 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266067 Wrote:
> Support for our own website is not universally held inside Logi.Now, wait a minute. By "our own website" are you meaning the e-commerce
side of it or the whole Slimdevices.com, wiki, forums, etc?

In the first case I might understand, in the latter... I'd be downright
pissed to learn it. I hope you'll be able to clarify.

Thank you.


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olc
2008-02-06 15:05:45 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266067 Wrote:
> The Slimdevices.com store is has been limited to the Americas and a few
> select Asian countries since the end of the Summer. It was not a recent
> change.
>
> That we continue to operate the .com at all has actually been a bit of
> a minor miracle. You may have noticed that Logitech operates its own
> website. Support for our own website is not universally held inside
> Logi.
>
> You may feel I was being blunt, and you may not agree with different
> prices in different countries, but kids that's the way things are. It's
> the way they've been for several months, and it's the way it's going to
> be from now on.

You can't have it both ways. On one hand you say Logitech is a big
multinational and attribute the gouging to that. Then you say you
operate your own website.

And a blunt "it's the way it's going to be" isn't much of a reason for
the discriminatory pricing. Finishing up with a demeaning "kids" was a
bad idea.


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shake-the-disease
2008-02-08 03:44:45 UTC
Permalink
Seems like the Squeezebox Duet is going to be available for '$451'
(http://www.itsupply.com.au/products/squeezebox-duet/product_info.php/products_id/115993)
+ $15 delivery.


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lhmperth
2008-02-08 04:28:26 UTC
Permalink
The price difference between Australia and the US is nothing new. It
applies to almost everything from CDs and DVDs to cars, computers,
clothing, furniture, etc.

Similar price difference exist with Europe and even within Europe
(although, less so now where a common currency exists).

Reason vary from tranport costs (a big factor for Australia), tarrifs,
taxes and a string of other reasons.

A big factor in Australia is that Australia is such a small market
compared to the US. However, as individuals are increasingly having
access to buying overseas, this becoming less of an issue.

It should not be ignored that sometimes it is just a money making
exercise by someone. However, this is becoming less of an issue, as I
can get on the net and find an alternative supplier anywhere in the
world if the local supplier is too expensive. But even local suppliers
are catching on that they need to be more competitive.

The RRP in Australia for the SB3 may appear high, but I recently bought
an SB3 for AU$299 in Australia from my local computer shop. Not a bad
price at all compared to what you can get in the US.

Things are changing.


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slimkid
2008-02-08 17:21:42 UTC
Permalink
Without an intention to side with any party on this issue, I'd just
suggest that the Australians look into their yard first when
complaininig about the pricing.

For eaxample, do a search at your local suppliers for this piece of
equipment: Citypulse DAC 7.2x . FYI, it is a Chinese product that can
be had at source for about US$280 and in Canada or US sells for around
US$350. Now, look it up locally and get back here with the best price
for which you are able to buy it in Australia.

K


--
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The sound stage will open up, bass will tighten and the imaging will
improve. DVD performance will also increase substantially.
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matthijskoopmans
2008-02-08 21:17:43 UTC
Permalink
I understand the RRP, I understand global pricing. And there is more at
play than just shipping costs and import duties (shipping costs for
software is very low :) ).

The RRP is supposed to be higher than the retail price, the way the
company does this is by imposing an additional margin. And this margin
is usually consumed by the cost of supporting individual customers
(local distribution offices of global companies are usually not geared
up for that - they deal with distributors/large retailers, high volume
buyers). So the fact that Logitech advertises an RRP higher than what
we expect is logical.

However, it is at the distribution end that things do not seem to be
working out yet. I hope that the manuafacturing capabilities allow a
Squeezebox Duet to be distributed by Harvey Norman, JB Hifi, and the
like in Australia (or Dixons in Europe.. are they still around?), or
MediaMart. Not the hifi niche channel, but a channel with access to a
very good market share. Volumes from a small distributor base keep the
costs down.

Remember, there are account managers that need to be paid and
commishioned, order processors, shipment agents (from Logitech national
sub to distributor), warranty and repair services that claim a fixed
cost, etc. Only with the appropriate scale can these operate without
inflicting a price hike.

My concern is that Logitech has not been able to enter this
distribution market in the local subs very well with the SlimDevices
product line. It seems that the local account managers do not want to
burn their hands at the "hard to explain why it costs what it costs,
high risk audio components that do not even stream video" (not my
opinion :))

What we can do as consumers in a country, is just walk up to such
retailer(they are in all the larger local malls, so combine it when you
are there for other business), and ask if they sell Logitech Squeezebox,
or Transporter (less chance that that will come out of the niche market
into the main stream, but ask your HIFI specialist)... If enough people
ask (and the staff is smart enough to notice), then someone may just ask
the Logitech account manager...

What SlimDevices can do, is to keep communicating the demand for local
distribution through the Logitech train... The Squeezebox Duet may just
be the product to break through the masses, and it does not cost more
than an iPod Touch..

Just my two cents (spread out over a lot of words)

Matt


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MrD
2008-02-08 21:26:46 UTC
Permalink
1 -- be happy they don't price by zipcode.... or do they...
2 -- welcome to the world of the devalued dollar


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-MrD
===================
1 Transporter
2 Squeezeboxen v3
1 Squeezebox v1
1 SliMP3
Linux x86-64 SlimServer 6.5.1
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smc2911
2008-03-21 08:55:19 UTC
Permalink
MrD;267173 Wrote:
>
> 2 -- welcome to the world of the devalued dollarDe-valued dollar should mean cheaper prices overseas...

Anyway, online retailers have started offering the Duet in Australia.
Mr Gadget (http://tinyurl.com/2kavyf) has is for $100 less than
Logitech (although it doesn't seem possible to actually order from the
Australian Logitech site yet, despite the fact that they've dropped the
"Notify Me" button). I am sure that there will be cheaper prices still
shortly.


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Apteryx
2008-03-27 03:36:33 UTC
Permalink
I discovered via my work, I can legitimately purchase the Duet from the
local distributor and that will save me more than NZD230 off the $699
RRP here - it's pretty clear where the margin is going... (eta 7th
April)


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smc2911
2008-02-06 09:06:24 UTC
Permalink
mvalera;266039 Wrote:
> Prices are set to market rates.I assume that by "market rates" here you mean rates made up by your
marketing department?

A quick glance here http://www.shopbot.com.au/p-57551-NSW.html shows
that resellers here in NSW sell the SB3 for A$314 to A$316 rather than
the Logitech "market rate" of $399.95. As for the real market price, at
which supply and demand meet, the jury will be out for a while on the
Duet at $600.


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