Microsoft blames Aussie dollar slide for price hike

The prices for business application software, operating systems, server software and development tools will increase by between 10 per cent and 18 per cent.

Microsoft doesn't want to miss out on its share of the Christmas shopping, however, so some products will get a price rise reprieve until just after the sales. Director, Enterprise and Solutions Marketing for Microsoft Australia, Alison Dodd, said the company will hold prices on current consumer, reference and games products purchased through retail outlets until 1 January 2001.

"Except for the GST, we have been able to hold prices constant over the past two years, despite significant downward currency movements," said Dodd.

"However, the continuing fall of our dollar against the US currency means we have had to make this change. It is important to note that we have only passed approximately two-thirds of the dollar's depreciation on to our customers and partners."

If things pick up, Dodd said Microsoft will monitor the exchange rate and "reflect any currency appreciation in our prices as soon as is practical."