Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) acquired ComiXology, a digital publishing platform for comic books, within the last few weeks, and already we’re seeing the effects of that acquisition. ZDNET and CNET both report that ComiXology has contacted users about the new version of the app and asking them to upgrade to it because plans to retire the old one.
Google, Apple no longer get a cut of comics purchases
Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)’s new version of the app doesn’t allow users of iOS devices to buy comics from ComiXology through the app. It also keeps Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) Play users from using their credits in their Google Wallets to buy things through the app. There’s apparently no storefront inside the app either, which means users must pay for their comics through their browser. This is similar to how Amazon’s Kindle app works.
The new app is designed this way to keep Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) from taking their cuts.
Will the change affect ComiXology purchases?
A spokesperson for ComiXology did not tell CNET whether any publishers of digital comics had complained about the change. The industry already has extremely slim margins by publishing comics on digital platforms. The change does highlight how confident ComiXology is that its users are loyal, particularly with backing from a major online vendor like Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN).
The spokesperson did say that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) users benefit because the company’s restrictions on content no longer matter. A few months ago, Apple told ComiXology to stop selling Sex Criminals, a popular sex-theme comedy which has been hailed by critics.
Comics author Chris Roberson said on Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) that he believes the creators of comics will see more money per sale. However, this could also potentially cause a problem if iOS users no longer buy as many comics as they did before.
ComiXology’s app Comics had been one of the highest grossing apps on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) according to in-app purchases for a number of years. Last year it topped the charts, holding 14% of all in-app sales for non-game apps.