How much more you pay for tech in South Africa than overseas

Tech prices in South Africa tend to be more expensive than in countries like the US, UK, Australia, and Japan, a MyBroadband comparison shows.

To perform the comparison we gathered the prices of five different products across five countries.

Prices for each product was taken from local stores in the various countries and converted to rand using Reserve Bank exchange rates.

What we found is that smartphone prices tend to be substantially higher in South Africa than the other countries, with the greatest disparity being with the US.

For example, a Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G is over R10,000 more expensive in South Africa.

In fact, importing the S21 Ultra 5G from Amazon instead of buying locally could save you over R7,000.

Higher prices in South Africa could be as a result of stock being acquired at weaker exchange rates or being locked into unfavourable forward cover contracts.

The rand reached R13.43 against the dollar earlier in June — the strongest it has been since February 2019.

The M1 Macbook was most expensive in the UK, costing R1,191 more than in South Africa. The US was once again the most affordable at R15,803, with Japan a close second at R16,390.

It should be noted that U.S. product pricing does not include sales tax, as tax rates vary between cities, counties and states, and could be between 0% and 11.5% depending on location.

Below is a table summarising the product pricing comparisons between the different countries. The lowest price for each product is in bold.

Product prices in different countries (in ZAR)
Country iPhone 12 Pro Max 512GB Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G 256GB Apple M1 Macbook Air 512GB Dell 27-inch Gaming Monitor LG C1 55-inch 4K OLED TV
South Africa R29,999 R27,999 R22,999 R9,499 R24,999
United States R19,242 R17,179 R15,803 R5,199 R22,006
United Kingdom R27,094 R23,221 R24,190 R7,746 R32,924
Australia R25,121 R20,668 R19,607 R5,083 R37,105
Japan R20,805 R18,973 R16,390 R6,959 R17,981

Now read: iPhone vs Samsung prices in South Africa from 2011 to 2021

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How much more you pay for tech in South Africa than overseas