As an American who lived abroad for a decade, only to recently move back, I know the sting of overseas prices for Apple-products. In many ways, it feels that the rest of the world subsidizes America’s low prices on Apple products.
Case in point, this chart by Setteb.it, comparing iPad 2 prices in the US with 18 out of the 25 countries that will launch iPad 2 tomorrow, March 25th. This is the sort of data that just rubs salt on the wounds of a European, since even a base 16GB iPad 2 WiFi will cost about $175 more than it would have if they bought the iPad 2 in the States.
This might seem a little misleading, since Europe’s VAT is quite high, and usually hovers around 20%. However, Apple’s still passing on a premium to EU iPad 2 buyers, even after VAT is subtracted. For example, Brits looking to buy the 64GB iPad 2 3G will pay about $63 more for that model than yanks… and that’s after the British number has been adjusted for VAT.
Prices like these are why when I lived in Europe I would schedule all of my Apple purchases around trips to the States: the money you can save on buying a MacBook Pro and an iPad together in the States more than pays for the plane ticket.