When Amazon purchased Comixology, it was a herald of change: iOS users lost the ability to purchase comics in-app, Android users were gifted with a new purchasing system and, now,the digital book seller is going DRM-free. Sort of. Comixology CEO David Steinberger announced today that DRM-free backups of select comics are now available to download in PDF and CBZ format, giving readers the ability to enjoy their content outside of the Comixology ecosystem for the first time. That said, it's somewhat limited: backup downloads are only available to book published by Image Comics, Dynamite Entertainment, Zenoscope Entertainment, Thrillbent, Top Shelf Productions and MonkeyBrain Comics -- in other words, publishers that have already dabbled with DRM-free comic distribution.
There's no word if publishing juggernauts like DC or Marvel will make their books available for download (don't count on it), but the option seems to be available for both big and small publishers. Even so, there's quite a few title available (this editor's list of downloadable backups tallied over 300 comics), all of which can be accessed under the "My Backups" tab of the user's library. Sounds like a winner to us -- though, Comixology does caution that fans of its "guided view" reading mode won't be able to access it in their downloaded backups.