Originally Posted by techno
I agree on the language selection. That is kind of silly that you can't choose your language based on your tongue instead of your address.
The cross border purchasing would not be so easy, due to legal stuff with the music industry. And are you sure about Amazon? As far as I know, I can't buy anything from Amazon.com and ship it to Canada. I have to use Amazon.ca if I want to ship here. Don't get me started on Netflix. (yes I know the hacks.)
As an American in Spain, I can tell you that if not for my original American accounts, it would be a real pain to get certain content in English (or from home). Even if you have your Mac set up to English, because of the IP, you'll be served the stores and content in Spanish, most of which you cannot change (including the iTunes store). An Xbox will be in English, but the moment you connect to the Xbox store it will be Spanish only with no language options. The Playstation will only allow Spanish and everything in Spanish. It's ridiculous to the extent that a friend of mine, having just moved here, wanted to learn Spanish and connected to Rosetta Stone in order to buy their Spanish program, but couldn't because the site was completely in Spanish with no possibility of a language change. How can he buy the program to learn the language if he can't understand the website? So much for the "Global Village" indeed.
Apple is actually not bad in their handling of all this for expats, as long as you still have a bank account in your original country. The problem comes up when you no longer have a British or American bank account and are forced to use a local bank account. Here you're forced to use and purchase the Spanish content and dubbed content (the horror). Apps thankfully are mostly multi-lingual (except for Microsoft software, but that's not a bug, it's a feature). Something should be done about this, but too many companies are making this impossible (especially content providers).
Amazon though, is the real hero of this story. I order things from AmazonUSA, AmazonUK, Amazon Spain, Amazon France, Germany, etc. and Amazon ships it here. Not everything is available for shipping of course, but most content is, and if you had a Kindle account in the UK or US before you moved, you can still buy from that store using your new, local credit card. Sometimes Amazon won't ship, but a marketplace provider will. It's something to look at for those that need it. Prime only works locally though, and they've eliminated free shipping from the UK to Spain to try to move residents to the Spanish Amazon. Amazon can be (and has been) a real life saver, especially if you live in a remote area or island that doesn't have big shops like El Corte Inglés, MediaMrkt, etc. apart from the fact that it's much, much cheaper.
As for live TV, it's gotten better in that some local channels offer language selection to view in the original language even on the free TDT over the air channels, though you still have to suffer through the absurdly long and horrible advert time (and it's still limited). Also, if you can afford it, Canal+ offers most everything in original language through satellite, including all the top U.S. and UK shows. The hottest shows are generally shown only a couple of days to a week after the U.S. airing, so not too bad.
Sorry, I kind of got stuck on the subject. It's something that's bothered me immensely for years.