Symantec has expanded its Internet activities to include online shopping. Visitors are now able to buy many of the company's software products and download them for immediate use. Pricing is US RRP, usually less than Australian RRP.
US and Canadian purchasers have the option of having a shrink-wrap package delivered within 10 days, but this service is not expected to be extended to Australia. In acknowledgment of the existing channel, anyone trying to buy online is first given the choice of finding an appropriate local reseller, in categories such as retail, corporate and government.
Symantec Australia marketing manager Cath Hodgson told ARN that she was aware Australian resellers could be upset by the move. "But we've worked very hard to make sure they get a prominent place on the Symantec web site, including a hot link to their own pages if they want it." She added that the company only expects around 5 per cent of sales to be made direct with the company in this manner. The site is www.symantec.com and it also provides free lite and timebomb versions of certain products for downloading.
Other companies, including Microsoft, have said they soon expect to sell software online.