The Marvel and DC comic book apps for the iPad and iPhone are powered by a company called ComiXology, which also offers a standalone app which lets you download thousands of comic book issues, not including big-name Marvel and DC superhero titles such as Spider Man, the X-Men, and Batman. But if you can live without those, there are some truly excellent titles available from the ComiXology app, ranging from The Walking Dead to DMZ, to Ex Machina.
Now ComiXology has released a version of its mobile app for Android, and it’s kind of awesome. Rather than simply clone the iPhone app, the Android version has been designed with a new look and feel which makes the app easier to navigate on Android devices.
The first time you launch the app, you’ll see a list of featured titles. You an also sort by Just Added, or Free comics. There’s a fairly large number of free titles to download, but you’ll usually get just the first issue or two to whet your appetite. Additional issues typically cost $1.99, although some comics run as little as $0.99 or as much as $4.99.
The My Comics tab shows a list of comics in your account. I logged in with the same credentials I used to sign up for the ComiXology iOS app, so the Android app instantly imported a list of comics I had previously downloaded. They aren’t automatically downloaded though. Instead, there’s a download button by each title, allowing me to pick and choose which issues I want to bring to my Android phone.
The Store tab lets you search the comic book store or browse by series, genre, publisher, or other criteria.
Navigating through comic books on a mobile device can take a little getting used to. It’s hard to make full page artwork viewable on a 3.5 inch display, so ComiXology has come up with a system that lets you tap left and right to slide from one panel to the next as the images get bigger or smaller depending on the circumstances. It doesn’t quite replicate the feeling of holding a full sized comic book in your hands, but there’s a lot to be said for the convenience factor of being able to carry around hundreds of issues in your pocket.
The ComiXology app is available as a free download from the Android Market. There’s no word on whether branded DC and Marvel apps will soon follow.
You can find more screenshots after the break.