In an exclusive announcement over at Gizmodo, Marvel has announced that they’re going to be releasing (almost) all of their comic book titles digitally the same day they’re available on paper in comic shops.
While DC did all their titles in one go, Marvel will be staggering its digital conversion by title, expecting to have everything up to date by March of 2012. Not included in the strategy are third party licensed books, like Stephen King’s The Stand, or books from their MAX imprint. But other than that?
Gentlemen, start your tablets.
The article only states that the comics will be available the Marvel app, and no other details about what, where, and when.
So this is what a lot of digital fans have been waiting for, and simultaneously what a lot of retail shops have been fearing. But it would appear that the publishers of Image, Dark Horse, DC, and now Marvel have crunched the numbers, and protection of the direct market has given way to desire for more revenue. The steadily dwindling sales numbers on physical copies no doubt had something to do with these decisions, and the coming months and years will no doubt be very interesting indeed.
Fans of the massive Marvel movie hits didn’t flock to comic shops, so perhaps they’re hoping that Marvel’s The Avengers will at least drive them to their computers. We shall see. Or maybe not, since digital sales numbers are guarded with a secrecy not unlike the true age of Hollywood starlets.
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