Like most Australians, I'm absolutely furious about Adobe's pricing policies. In the US an upgrade to Photoshop CS6 can be bought for $199, but in Australia we're expected to pay $337. At the time of writing, the Australian and US dollars are near parity, and the Australian dollar was worth a bit more when the prices were announced.
Of course, it's not just Australians that are getting ripped off. I see that the British are expected to pay £190.80, (about 307 USD) and the Japanese 26,250 yen (about 328 USD). These prices are for digital downloads, so there's no physical product to be delivered, and therefore virtually no delivery cost. The consumption tax in Australia is only 10% (and it wouldn't even be payable if they let us buy from the US site) so that is not a valid excuse. Adobe are ripping off their foreign customers, and that's all there is to it.
Adobe don't even make any attempt to hide the fact that they're ripping us off. If anything, they seem to enjoy rubbing our noses in it. When I typed "Photoshop CS6 upgrade" into Adobe's Australian web page, it redirected me to a page that showed the American upgrade prices. When I tried to buy a copy, however, it wouldn't let me because I lived in the wrong country. Basically Adobe are sticking up their middle finger and saying "We're ripping you off, and you know we're ripping you off, but there's nothing you can do about it because we're a monopoly, ha ha!"
I can understand that Adobe charge their foreign customers more because by raising prices they make more money, and they think they don't have to worry about losing customers because Photoshop (and much of their other software) has no real competition. What I don't understand is why they don't just raise their American prices to the same extent. Why is it that they think they can get away with ripping off British, Japanese, or Australians, but don't do the same thing to their fellow Americans? What's wrong with a single, global price? Everyone who buys Adobe's software gets exactly the same product, and there are no delivery costs, so it's only fair that everyone should pay the same price.
By charging some customers a higher price simply because of the country that they live in, Adobe generate a tremendous amount of ill feeling. Foreign customers may still buy the software because they need it, and there is no competition, but that doesn't mean that they don't hate Adobe, and wouldn't gladly switch to another product if one were available. It's like America buying oil from Saudi Arabia - they hate the Saudi regime (as they should) but they do business with them because they need the oil and can't get it from anyone else.
I haven't decided whether or not I'll upgrade to CS6. I'd like to, and I can afford it, but I think that buying it at the Australian price would be like paying off an extortionist. It just doesn't feel like an ethical thing to do. I think the best course would be for everyone outside the US to boycott Adobe's products, unless they absolutely need them for business purposes.