Amazon updates Comixology to avoid sharing profits with Apple, Google

Avatar By Aaron Sims | 6 years ago

Users of the Comixology app for iOS and Android will notice major changes with a new software update this week, and in the eyes of many users of the program, those changes are not for the better.

According to a report from CNET, Comixology is making moves to cut Apple and Google out of its comic sale revenues. For as long as Comixology has been active, any comic titles purchased using the app could be bought directly through the program. Since these in-app purchases involved the use of either an Apple ID account or a Google Play account, the two companies were able to easily and legally skim 30 percent off the top of the revenues.

However, when Amazon.com purchased Comixology earlier this month, it became clear that the global e-commerce website did not wish to share earnings with anyone else. As a result, the latest Comixology app update has taken strides to cut Amazon and Google out of the loop completely as far as revenues are concerned. Unfortunately, to do so, Amazon and Comixology have also had to make it more difficult for users to purchase and read comics for the app.

In fact, on the iOS version of the app, users no longer have the option of making in-app purchases at all. Customers can still purchase comics from the Comixology site, but they will have to do so using an internet browser – either on their device or on a separate computer – and then do some syncing to get the books in the Comixology app.

On Android devices, things are a bit easier. In-app purchases are still a possibility, so the hassles of syncing are avoided. However, users will no longer be able to pay using their Google Play accounts, and will have to submit a credit card number or Paypal account instead to continue buying comics.

Amazon’s desire not to share Comixology revenues is an understandable one. On iOS especially, Comixology is one of the leading programs in terms of in-app purchases and profits. Comixology also played a huge role in convincing comic book companies to digitalize their properties in the first place, so it is still enjoying considerable recognition for that fact. However, users have thus far not been happy with the new payment and purchase options, and it is possible that Amazon’s plans could backfire if users decide to go elsewhere for their comic book needs. After all, Comixology no longer has convenience on its side.

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