ComiXology made their announcement recently, that they would team with retailer website ICV2 to add a comics download element to retailers websites, allowing them to share in the revenue stream such legally downloaded comics may provide.
But the big boy of comics shop distribution has just made its plans known.
Bleeding Cool broke the story that something like this was coming at the end of last year. One could even see the ComiXology announcement as an attempted spoiler.
Because now Comixology's smaller rival digital comics publisher iVerse has teamed up with Diamond Comics Distribution for Diamond Digital. And instantly made iVerse much more of a major player.
So what's the gen?
First, participating comics will be sold day and date exclusively through comic shop and their websites, for thirty days, for $1.99. You won't be able to get them digitally without going through a comics shop for that period.
And second, people who buy the hard copy of a comic wil be able to download a digital version… for 99 cents.
Which turns a $3.99 hard copy comic to $4.99 for hard copy and digital. I'm not exactly sure how successful that will be.
But all a retailer needs to participate is a store, an internet connection and a printer.
Diamond Digital will debut in July and currently signed-on publishers include the program include Ape Entertainment, Archie Comics, Aspen Comics, Bluewater Productions, Broadsword Comics, Hermes Press, IDW Publishing, Moonstone Comics, NBM Publishing, Papercutz, Red 5 Comics, Studio Foglio, Titan Books, TOKYOPOP, Top Cow Productions and Top Shelf Productions.
Announcements for Marvel, DC, Image and Dark Horse have not been made. Yet.
Expect to hear more from the ComicsPRO Annual Meeting this weekend in Dallas and the Diamond Retailer Summit at C2E2 in Chicago in mid-March.