Digital Media

Apple hikes prices in Australian App Store, blames falling dollar

For the second time in two years, Australians are facing a price rice on their apps, as Apple responds to currency fluctuations.

The new iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. Sarah Tew/CNET

Apple has once again raised the cost of apps Down Under, just over a year and a half after Australians were hit with an App Store price hike thanks to the country's falling dollar.

"When foreign exchange rates change, we sometimes need to update prices on the App Store," Apple said in an email to developers last week, 9 to 5 Mac reports.

It's not all bad news for Aussies though, as Apple also revealed in the email that it had set two new pricing tiers in the country for developers, one of which allows them to sell apps for AU$0.99. This lower pricing tier is usually reserved for growing markets such as India.

Just how much have prices been raised? Cheaper apps like Afterlight's AU$1.29 photo editor have been hiked to AU$1.49. Formerly AU$8.99, the popular Minecraft: Pocket Edition is now $10.99. On the more expensive side, Final Fantasy VII, which used to cost AU$19.99, is now set at AU$24.99. However, many AU$1.29 apps, like Sleep Cycle alarm clock, have dropped to AU$0.99.

Prices have also risen in Indonesia and Sweden. It comes after the Cupertino, California-based company raised app prices in Australia, India, Indonesia, Turkey and South Africa last March. Prior to that, applications were priced identically in the Australian and American store thanks to Australia's strong dollar at the time.

The Australian dollar, now at AU$0.73 to the US dollar, reached an all-time high of AU$1.10 in July of 2011.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.