UPDATE 4/7/2014: Trial versions are now available for download from Smith Micro. http://www.contentparadise.com/productDetails.aspx?id=24231
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Just received the following email from Manga Studio Product Manager Fahim Niaz at Smith Micro:
Digital versions of Manga Studio 5 and 5 EX are back next week!
The digital download versions of Manga Studio will now include Clip Studio Paint branding. Manga Studio and Clip Studio Paint are the exact same applications. Clip Studio Paint will simply be the digital download version of Manga Studio. The Manga Studio website and branding will remain the same and we will continue to promote the Manga Studio brand for both the DVD and download versions.
Another great piece of news is that Smith Micro will be providing customer support to all English versions of Clip Studio Paint and Manga Studio! We will also be receiving updates sooner and will release updates for both Manga Studio and Clip Studio Paint at the same time.
With all that being said, we’re extremely excited to be able to once again offer digital download versions of this great product!
It's good to see that Japanese developer Celsys and Smith Micro have reached an agreement to settle what has been one of the oddest episodes in consumer software sales that I've ever witnessed.
The lack of a download version of Manga Studio has no doubt dampened sales since Celsys decided to self-market the English language downloadable version of its popular art program Clip Studio Paint. It's unfortunate (mostly for those of us who have to write about the subject) that we will have to continue to refer to both product names, but that's a minimal inconvenience.
I asked Niaz whether the new arrangement with Celsys means that English-language users may eventually see the release of other products like Clip Studio Modeler, Coordinate or Action. His response was that those products were still in "discussion phases."