Apple raising Canadian App Store prices due to weak Dollar

Daniel Bader

January 18, 2016 3:10pm

Prices for apps, games and in-app experiences are set to increase in Canada this week, according to a document Apple sent to developers today.

“When foreign exchange rates change, we sometimes need to update prices on the App Store. Within the next 72 hours, prices for apps and In-App Purchases will increase,” said the email, detailing changes to prices in Canada, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, and South Africa.

Specific changes to in-store were not detailed, though the document notes that there will now be two low-price tiers available to developers applicable to the Canadian App Store.

Today, Canadian users pay a 14 to 20 percent premium over US customers depending on the app’s original price. For example, a $0.99 USD app costs $1.19 CAD, but a $15.99 game can cost just $18.99 CAD. Apple says app prices will automatically be updated, and subscriptions will continue as before, but prior to renewal customers will receive an email with the choice of opting in at the newer price, or cancelling without penalty.

We’ve reached out to Apple about the specifics of the price increases.

apple increase

Source 9to5Mac
  • Peter

    I think most people can understand these justifications, but the reverse better be true when the Canadian dollar reaches parity with the US again, however long that takes.

    • Tim

      the reverse is never true, this is Apple we’re talking about.

    • Mr Dog

      Actually Apple is one of the few companies that always adjust prices based on the dollar, weather high or low.

    • Johny LaRue


    • It’s Me

      Except that they did exactly the same the last time the reverse was true. They were one of the first to adjust prices down when our dollar first got close to parity years ago.

    • JonathanM

      Obvious troll is obvious. Apple has always adjusted their prices according to exchange rates, whether it’s an increase or decrease in price.

    • TheLouisXXI

      Apple was one of the first companies to even bring down their prices. Samsung however drop the prices of most of their phones in Canada when the dollar went down

    • Adderbox76

      Understand what? Digital delivery has exactly squat to do with currency valuation. Currency valuation effects the cost to either manufacture, import or transport goods into and out of a country. It doesn’t cost an app maker (or Apple) any more money to digitally deliver an app because the servers aren’t in Canada.

      This is a convenient economic excuse to cash grab that people just bend over and take because they have a nebulous at best understanding of digital retailing.

  • Omar

    Meanwhile, Google lowered the CAD price on their Nexus phones, and I have yet to see a price increase in the Play Store.

    Just saying.

    • It’s Me

      Google puts the onus on the developer to follow and adjust to currency fluctuations, they don’t adjust prices for developers. So, you won’t see mass increases like with Apple because they won’t all happen at once and they won’t be coordinated. If a developer fails to adjust for the dropping dollar, they just take the hit for selling in Canada.

    • Omar

      My main point was they actually lowered the price of their phones.

    • It’s Me

      Well, only the 5X and it reflects the drop in the US price. Well, not entirely. The US price dropped by $50 back in December, which should have meant a $72 drop in Canada. It took almost a month for them to adjust the Canadian price at all and then the reduction didn’t match the US drop. Relative to the USD pricing, the Canadian price actually went up in that sense, but we don’t see the same whining and stomping of feet.

      It’s nice that they lowed the price on the 5X but let’s not pretend it is related to the crashing CAD price.

    • Omar

      You’re right that it was on the 5X that got discounted. But that’s it. And I didn’t say it was because our dollar is $0.69 USD. That would make no sense.

      The Nexus 5X was reduced by $30 earlier this year. I don’t know what price cut you’re talking about, that maybe was a boxing day sale? Anyway, cut by $30 USD = $43 CAD. But it was cut by $60 CAD. Further, both the 5X and 6P were priced lower in Canada than in the US, despite the weak dollar. The 5X is significantly cheaper in Canada than the United States.

      Apple, on the other hand, rose the prices of the iPhone in Canada shortly after their last App Store price increase last year. I wonder if they’ll do the same thing again this year. Would you be surprised?

      Don’t get me wrong… No other manufacturer gives us a break. Samsung et al do the same thing. But Google actually did us a solid on their latest flagships, which you seem to want to belittle for some reason. The fact is, they didn’t have to lower the price in Canada. Just like Apple didn’t increase the USD price of the iPhone in America when they did in Canada.

      It’s a nice gesture.

    • It’s Me

      Ok. I just assumed you were relating it to FX driven price fluctuation since that was the topic at hand.

      But yeah, price cuts are always nice.

    • neo905

      The iPhone 6S+ 128GB phone is $1,335 no contract on Telus, which is up another $110 from last year. That is an absurd price, Canadian dollar or not. The equivalent Nexus 6P 128GB is $849 no contract and hasn’t changed since it was released. This is all about maintaining their margins for the sake of the shareholders while screwing their customer base. Which they are within their right too but let’s not pretend it is about anything else.

    • It’s Me

      Hand waving doesn’t make currency changes invisible. There’s nothing to “pretend” about currency crashes. Obviously it’s about protecting margins. Yet the US price, upon which Canadian prices are based, have not gone up. The change in the Canadian pricing is directly attributable to the exchange from USD into Canadian.

      Are people here so young that they really forget what a low Canadian dollar does to pricing? To even say “Canadian dollar or not” just screams of a lack of a basic grasp of currency rates.

      Lowest dollar in years will mean highest prices for imported goods in years. Absurd exchange rates lead to absurd prices. Not that hard a concept.

    • MoYeung

      62 cents in 2002 was historic low.

    • It’s Me

      That was years ago, if I’m not mistaken.

    • MoYeung

      People still talk about the 1970’s and 1980’s and WWII even …

    • It’s Me

      Indeed they do.

    • neo905

      Easy there Grandpa. I was around waaaaay back in 2002 when we had a 62 cent dollar. I also remember that was the year that housing returned to the 1989 GTA price before the bubble burst. We finally didn’t have double digit interest rates and we had twice the manufacturing capacity we do now in Ontario. We don’t have the same levers we did back then to address the dollar situation, but I digress.

      I know Apple is trying to protect their industry leading margins for as long as they can. It will be a losing battle as the smartphone market continues to get commoditized and saturated. They are already showing signs of slowing sales. At this point it is just a fleecing. Quit trying to justify a $500 difference to just currency. That is just silly.

    • It’s Me

      What $500 difference? Compared to a Nexus? I never tried to justify that. People keep bringing up the Nexus as though it explains currency exchange rates. It doesn’t but it keeps coming up. Since it isn’t related there is nothing to justify as far as that goes. Different products have different prices. Amazing fact for those that don’t seem to be aware.

      What is related to Canadian prices is the Canadian dollar relative to the US dollar. Stop trying to pretend that you don’t understand that. All the handwaving you want (and mentioning cheaper products is just hand waving) doesn’t change that fact.

    • neo905

      The fact is even without taking other phones into account, or margins into account.

      $1,335 + TAX = $1,508.55

      is a crazy amount of money to pay for a phone. You can do all the handwaving and cheerleading you want. That is just a fact.

    • It’s Me

      It sure it a lot of money…and entirely driven by exchange rates. High exchange rates means high prices. I know math is hard but this is ridiculous.

      iPhone 6S USD = $650. With today’s exchange rate, that works out to about $950 CAD. Surprise, it is currently $900 from Apple in Canada, so it’s actually a little cheaper to buy it in Canada than currency dictates. Bastards are actually taking a hit on the currency (not that I expect that to last long).

      Apple’s base price in USD hasn’t changed for a long time. But pricing in any currency that has fallen to the USD have reflected the lower value of those currencies. Are you sure you were around in 2002? You seem to be struggling with fairly basic concepts.

      But keep up the hand waving. It helps build your arm strength.

    • neo905

      Actually that’s $915 +TAX = $1,033.95 for a 16GB, 4.7″ phone with a 720 display. Yes. You’re right. Great deal. Eyes roll.

    • It’s Me

      Now you want to blame Apple for taxes. Wow. That’s taking hand waving to an entirely new and desperate level.

      Within what Apple can control, you know those things called prices, the Canadian price is lower considering currency.

      If you’re upset about the impact taxes have, call Trudeau and see if he’ll listen to you.

    • neo905

      I don’t think Trudeau uses his smartphone for anything other than selfies and social media so that wouldn’t work.

    • MoYeung

      Talk to him about lowering the GST

    • neo905

      GST will be 15% next year. Canadians just don’t know it yet.

    • It’s Me

      Blame Apple.

    • neo905

      You are wound up tighter than a snare drum. Relax. Your blood pressure must be high.

    • It’s Me

      i blame Apple.

    • MoYeung

      GTA house prices today are more expensive than ever… young people these days and their insolence.

    • neo905

      I know. $202,000 was the average price in 2002. Now it is $600,000 with interest rates almost at zero and going lower on Wednesday when the Bank of Canada will lower it.The drop in our dollar is the equivalent of a $600,000 house in Nov 2014 now being worth $450,000. When you put it in those terms people realize the erosion of purchase power from our currency.

      When this bubble finally pops over leveraged Millennials and Gen X’ers are going to learn a harsh lesson.

    • cartfan88

      I’d hazard the customer base can choose to go elsewhere or forgo an upgrade or two the ways things are in iPad land. No need to upgrade very year. There’s zero need to upgrade from a 6 to a 6s unless you have to have a few features.

      As I’ve said before Apple is going to again test their elasticity of demand to non-US$ markets. There will be other tests on the way down (for the C$) as to what people will buy no matter what the price or choose alternatives.

    • Allan

      The Nexus phones got lowered because the US price also dropped, not because of any currency corrections.

      However, currently the 16GB Nexus 5X sells for $349USD which equates to over $500CAD. On the Play Store the actual price is $439CAD…So for once, I’m not complaining about being Canadian.

    • JonathanM

      Yea because no one is buying them. Just saying.

    • TheLouisXXI

      Google has been offering discounts to Google Music users.

  • Stock up now!

  • MoYeung

    I blame Canada, you know.

  • Blair Davis

    Even more reason to now always wait for app sales.

  • J.S.Bach

    This isn’t really a problem, apple fans will shell out pretty much anything they’re told to. It’ll be interesting when Apple, like all tech companies before it, begin their decline and start to become desperate to hold onto their kingdom what they do with prices.

    • JonathanM

      Always funny to see people like you predicting the “downfall” of apple based on something that’s completely unrelated.

      Apple adjusts prices based on exchange rates, and has always been. Yes, they’ve also dropped prices when our dollar was strong.

      But hey, close your eyes to reality and keep living in that delusional apple hating world of yours.

    • J.S.Bach

      Correct, you are delusional. Apple market cap is down $218B since May as institutional investors dump the stock because it’s no longer considered a growth company. You don’t have to believe me, you can read for yourself:


      Replace _com with .com

      A fanboi site like Mobile Syrup will never report it but it’s the truth none the less.

  • PowerWheelz #BB10

    Because the $51B last quarter wasn’t enough they need to kick Canadians while they’re down.

    • JonathanM

      I don’t see you bitching at the supermarkets for raising prices on almost all imported groceries.

      Blame yourself for electing a drama teacher as the PM.

    • PowerWheelz #BB10

      This isn’t an article about food so why would I batch about that? And farmers don’t make enough in the first place.

      This is an article about Apple raising prices after just posting their 4th quarter earnings of $51B (just on apps, not even their over priced devices).

      By the way… I didn’t vote Liberal and never have.

      Stop stabbing, hoping to strike a hit.

    • Jay

      Well said!

    • Jay

      Are you for real? He was just elected and you blame him on our current economic situation? You’re a turd just like the PM’s predecessor …. he’s the one you should be attacking!…. smh!

  • Jay

    Well that makes perfect sense … raise the price to make struggling people buy your product? Just how much profit does Apple really need ffs??!!

  • MoYeung

    I just found out. Nee Zealand dollar to USD is even lower than CAD to USD … I suppose there are worse places among 1st world country.