Graphic.ly announced today that it would be bringing Marvel comics to readers via Graphic.ly’s desktop application. This marks a major change for Marvel since comics purchased and downloaded via Graphic.ly’s desktop application can read at any time including when the computer is not online and the comics can be transferred from one device to another. Before this announcement Marvel had only permitted downloads of their comics via iOS applications (for phones, iPad, etc.) from Comixology, Graphic.ly and others.
On the iFanboy Website, which Graphic.ly purchased earlier this year, the company announced that “the vast collection of Marvel Comics, previously only available on the desktop via the Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited Platform on Marvel.com can now be downloaded and enjoyed by you on the Graphic.ly desktop application, also meaning that you no longer need to be connected to the Internet in order to read your Marvel Comics in full resolution on your desktop monitor.”
The Marvel Digital Comic Unlimited platform (see “Interview With Dan Buckley, Part II”), which provides access via subscription and is only accessible by computers that are online will continue, but it now appears that Graphic.ly will provide access to that same library of titles via downloadable purchases of single issues. So in essence there are now two parallel platforms for the MDCU titles, one online-only and subscription-based, and the other featuring individually-priced issues available for direct downloading.
Though Graphic.ly is the first company to announce Marvel Comic downloads, there was no mention of exclusivity in the announcement, so it may well be that other companies will be offering similar access to Marvel titles in the future.