The merging of Comixology and Kindle has created a hell I want to escape from


In February of this year, Amazon finally completed its consumption of the standalone comics download app, Comixology. Amazon acquired the app in 2013, and Aside from removing the ability to purchase storyboards directly From the application, it has been left untouched for nearly a decade. But this year, Amazon changed things Integrating the Comixology digital marketplace directly into the Kindle ecosystem and completely redesigning the Comixology app. It has taken two distinct mediums – digital comics and digital books – and smashed them together into an unholy mass of content worst of all. Apparently, if you allow one company to have a near-monopoly in the field of digital books and comics, they will do horrible things that make the experience worse.

For those of you who aren’t obsessed with comics, Comixology is the biggest marketplace for digital comics. If you do not want to pay for Individual monthly subscriptions For publishers, it is the only digital comics resource for every number of major publishers, including DC Comics and Image. If you read comics and want to avoid the hassles of storing your physical collection, Comixology has always offered, until recently, a very powerful all-in-one alternative.

Meanwhile, Kindle maintained its de facto monopoly on the US digital book space. Amazon’s e-readers are the most bought in the US, with Rakuten’s Kobo line of e-readers (Rakuten is the largest book seller in Japan) and the Barnes & Noble line of Nook e-readers coming in behind.

If you thought that the enormity of these markets meant that Kindle or Comixology were the best, you would be very wrong. They succeed entirely because of their size – not their quality. Amazon is so big that it can regularly use its size to pressure or ignore publishers. in In 2019, Amazon shipped several copies of the sequel Margaret Atwood The Handmaid’s Tale A week ago, despite the fanfare of independent booksellers, she had no trouble with the publisher, Penguin Random House. Penguin Random House didn’t even mention Amazon when it apologized to readers and booksellers for breaking the ban.

Amazon’s growing outside role in digital publishing has prompted me to try to cut back on the use of its services. So when Amazon completed its integration with Comixology in February, it took me a while to notice. But boy, have I recently started noticing.

The new Comixology app is pretty much… annoying. This is her best word. Everything you need is still there, but the design isn’t really intuitive, and it can make a whole lot of comics (I’ve been using Comixology since 2011) hard to navigate. It kind of feels like when you go to the grocery store after moving the aisles. Everything is still there, but the change seems so dramatic after years of being fashionable.

But where my local food bazaar would helpfully name the aisles, Comixology didn’t. There are no obvious labels for useful built-in tools like Guided View, which is designed to move you seamlessly from panel to panel with a swipe rather than having each page take up the entire screen. The how-to is still there, but the clear explanation of what it is or how to use it is gone. You can access it by double clicking – which I only know because I was trying to access the menu to leave the book.

However, the real pain of Comixology’s new experience is the integration of its store with the larger Amazon store. Amazon has always been struggling with mobility. there she is counterfeit productssponsored ads, and sometimes fake products in sponsored ads. When I went for the new pre-order Poison ivy series, about DC villain, earlier this month, Instead, I met ointments used to treat poison ivy rashes.

In the ensuing three weeks, they fixed this search result. The new book is now the best result. Ointments come after. The rest of the Poison Ivy-focused books DC has released over the years are now “at the bottom of the page,” until you scroll through the sponsored junk you might not have been looking for.

I am looking for comics.

Other popular heroes, such as Spider-Man, Captain America, and Batman, recreate the game’s scores alongside the comics directly.

Comics science searches are used to return only illustrated results.

And see, those search results weren’t exactly great before the merge. There must be a million variations of a Spider-Man title. If you’re looking for a very specific Spider-Man Race 10, you’ll probably be checking a lot of results unless you add more to your query. But the pre-Amazon merger was also not evading the findings of Amazon Prime TV shows, toys, pomades, and whatever else Amazon thought a finder of Spider-Man comics might want to buy.

With the service now, you’re reminded, painfully, at every turn, that you’re in the Amazon home and will think of more than just one thing you want to buy. It is intrusive and unpleasant. And for months, I figured it out with friends and I read about it While nodding yes and generally accepting hate.

But last week, I wanted to read a book in the Kindle app. I haven’t used it in a while, preferring Libby when I can, but I knew I had this book, and I knew I wanted to read it. Only instead of being met with the countless books I’ve acquired over a decade of using the Amazon Kindle Store, I’ve been met with countless comics I’ve acquired over a decade of using the Comixology Store.

I swear I read loud comics sometimes.

There is no way to filter comics from my Kindle app. They are always just there. The first thing I saw if I didn’t buy a book that week. It’s annoying on my iPad Mini. It’s completely offensive on your Android E-Ink tablet and Kindle Oasis.

It also doesn’t have to be this way. Amazon is one of the largest and richest companies in the world. It has money to spare for front-end UI designers. This can be excreted quickly. But I don’t think Amazon has any inclination for that. For the most part, Amazon is content with maintaining their e-book business, not being real leaders or good agents. And it’s not just the bunhead design choices that came after integrating digital comics and e-book stores that made me feel this way.

Now the Kindle range of e-readers seems painfully outdated along with something like Kobo Ellipsa and Sage Or basically the entire Onyx Boox lineup. These use the latest E-Ink monitors and include fantastic capabilities like faster refresh rates for web browsing and pen input. The most important thing about the Kindle range is that the e-readers are relatively cheap and work with the Amazon store.

Amazon left its main app to recommend books, Goodreads, slow down too. The app doesn’t seem to have had an UI update since it was acquired by Amazon in 2013. In fact, it looks a lot like it did when it launched in 2007. Other apps, like Netflix, Facebook, and Google, have grown aggressively using massive amounts of data To develop algorithms that try to predict what you want to read or watch before doing so. Goodreads recommends everything that is widely popular and vaguely next door.

From the store to the recommendation service to Kindle devices, Amazon can do a lot better. However, it’s as if Amazon really likes how little effort it has to put on its massive monopoly to keep making dollars. Earlier this year, Comixology CEO David Steinberger departed “to lead a new Amazon-wide initiative that’s a pretty good opportunity not to take advantage of it.” in Twitter themeHe confirmed that he will be with Comixology in an advisory role. From the outside, it certainly looks like Amazon has gone and rewarded the incompetence with an upgrade. I’d be more annoyed, but I’m still trying to find the book I wanted to read on my Kindle.