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DC announces digital comics will arrive day-and-date with print versions

DC Comics made a huge announcement yesterday regarding its entire line of comic books, basically saying that on August 31, the company will restart 52 of its weekly publications, bringing them all back to issue number 1 and making significant story (and costume!) changes to many of its popular superheroes like Batman and Superman. But even more importantly for those of us in the comic-loving real world, the company will start publishing digital versions of its comics at the same time that print versions hit the shelves (known in the movie/video rental business as 'day-and-date' release).

Previously, both Marvel and DC have held back from publishing digital and print versions at the same time, mostly to give comic book stores and bookstores a chance to sell print copies exclusively. But no more, in DC's case -- as of August 31, you'll be able to buy new comics on the iPad at the same time as in the stores. That might be the beginning of a death knell for a lot of comic book stores, but clearly DC has determined it's time to make the jump.

It hasn't been revealed yet exactly how these digital issues will be available, but I'm guessing the DC Comics iPad app will have most of them for purchase. Good news for comic readers on the iPad, and I bet we'll see Marvel follow suit with a similar announcement soon.

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