Though hard data pertaining to digital comic sales remains exclusive to publishers, comiXology has announced that its "Comics" app peaked at #2 on iTunes' list of top grossing iPad apps this week. The app has since moved to the #4 slot, but in either case the position seems like a clear indicator that people are dropping a decent chunk of change to read comics on their tablets. In its official press release, comiXology attributes the boost to its recent app upgrade and DC's line-wide shift to releasing digital comics the same day as print. DC's standalone comiXology app currently sits at the #9 top grossing iPad app, which adds weight to DC Comics co-publisher Jim Lee's recent interview with Salon, in which he stated that Justice League #1 had set a digital sales record for the company.From comiXology's official press release:

"I'm happy to say that we made Angry Birds a little angrier last night with us trouncing them in sales," said David Steinberger, CEO of comiXology. "But in all seriousness, when you look at our success as one of the top grossing iPad Apps and then take in the news about DC Comics going back to print on almost all of The New 52 comics, you can see that digital distribution is growing both the print and digital comic book market. DC's daring move going digital the same day as print with all their print publications this month in combination with the great buying and reading experience our App provides is a tide that lifts all boats."

Though Marvel hasn't taken its full line to a same-day digital publishing schedule yet, its comiXology powered standalone iPad app currently sits at #31, with Dark Horse's independent app at #155. No other competing comic book app, on the iPad or iPhone, currently ranks in the top 200.

Among the "Books" category, comiXology's standalone app and its Marvel and DC apps currently stand as the top three highest grossing apps on the iTunes charts. Dark Horse sits at #6, with Viz Media at #15. Image Comics' comiXology powered app ranks at #33.

It's hard to draw many real conclusions from comiXology's rankings given how anomalous DC's relaunch is in terms of comic sales across the board and how little we know about digital comic reader demographics. Clearly more money is being spent on digital comics on the comiXology app and presumably others, but information about who is doing the buying and how much each user is spending remains, for now anyway, a matter for comiXology and publishers to examine.