No one has really decided what the metrics for digital comics are — real numbers are scarce, and most players keep it close to the vest. Back in December, comiXology announced they had 1 million downloads of their comics apps, and now iVerse/IDW has hit the same milestone, with over 3 million digital IDW comics distributed.

IDW Publishing today confirmed its leadership position in the digital comics world with the announcement of another major milestone – distribution of over one million apps on the Apple App StoreSM. Demonstrating the breadth of IDW’s overall digital strategy, more than three million IDW digital comics have been distributed across all platforms worldwide.

IDW Publishing was one of the first major comics publishers to step into digital distribution. IDW digital comics are presently available for more mobile devices and platforms than any other major publishers, including the Apple App StoreSM, Sony Digital Comics for the PSP, the Nokia Ovi Store, Amazon’s Kindle Store, the AT&T AppCenter® and BlackBerry’s App WorldTM, with more to be announced throughout 2011. The IDW digital comics catalog includes single issues and graphic novels, all formatted for tablets, phones and game devices, with titles ranging from top licensed brands to fan-favorite creators. IDW also offers comics through several partners, including iVerse, Graphic.ly, and For-Side.

“We have over 800 comics in our digital line,” said Jeff Webber, Director of ePublishing for IDW. “That amounts to more than 3,500 individual apps and comics offered through various distribution partners. We’re especially excited that digital distribution is increasing awareness of IDW’s offering overall, bringing in new readers with over 40% of our downloads occurring outside of the US. And while Apple products generate the most downloads, we’re very pleased to see our other distribution channels growing rapidly.”

As the first comics publisher to launch its own “in app purchase” storefronts for the Apple iPadTM, iPhone® and iPod touch®, IDW has introduced several unique apps catering to fans of particular titles. The IDW Comics app offers the complete digital catalog, while the TRANSFORMERS Comics, G.I. JOE Comics, Star Trek Comics and True Blood Comics app feature titles from each respective brand. The latest edition of IDW’s storefront apps is Doctor Who Comics, which shot to the top of the App StoreSM book lists worldwide and offers IDW’s complete Doctor Who catalog to fans around the world.

IDW Publishing has also created apps for special series and events, such as INFESTATION, which includes issues from the popular cross-over series featuring TRANSFORMERS, G.I. JOE, Star Trek and Ghostbusters. In yet another innovation, IDW released the first creator-based app, Templesmith Comics, featuring the art and stories of Ben Templesmith.


  1. It’s free to download the app, and are the comic downloads paid downloads? I’ve downloaded plenty of free comics on my iPad (legally), but no paid ones.

  2. Micah, if an individual issue can reach 15k readers, it’s not too much of a feat for the company to reach a million. No one is saying it’s one million unique readers. It could be those 15k readers buying 100 different issues.

  3. Can anyone throw more light on the general App model? From what I hear IDW compensates it’s creatives very poorly (but pays staff to live quite comfortably) so info on apps thing can only help inform potential rivals –and offer talent options to break the shackles of blood-sucking corporate socialist.

    That having been said…

    As far as comics go: It looks to me as if a successful app must function more like a store than a single publication, in that it needs to offer a wide selection and add new product on a regular basis. This would explain why IDW seems to be aggressively acquiring material from other publishers (they do well from publishing, but don’t want to get their hands dirty generating much new material).

    I got details on the split with apple (who seem, from what I hear, to sell a lot more product than Android, etc,.) — but forgot – anybody want to remind me? I’ve heard that Apple is VERY conservative (only allowed Playboy app to be published w/no nudity?) — so unless that’s changed, how would IDW publish something (adult) like Trevor Von Eeden’s Jack Johnson thing (which they are handling) ??

    Isn’t this a good subject for a detailed, ongoing tread (that would benefit everyone producing comics), and defang those who’s only strength is the finance, connections and (closely guarded) sales information to launce apps??

    Not that I’m so involved in the “comics business” these days, but I tire of all this big “apps” mystery.

    Lets get some costs and sales #s on the table for all to see. It can only help the comic book business in the end.