In the market where digital comics took off first, the sales of manga collections in digital format in Japan have now surpassed sales of physical books, according to the Research Institute for Publications, as reported by NHK World (via AnimeNewsNetwork).  Sales of digital manga grew to approximately $1.6 billion in 2017, while sales of manga as physical books dropped to $1.56 billion.

Digital sales grew 17% year-on-year, with discount campaigns and catalogue titles stimulating sales, according to the report, while sales of physical books fell over 14% from the previous year, a record rate of decline.

The combined market fell 0.9% in 2017, with digital piracy a contributing factor, the report said. The analysis did not include manga periodicals.