Yen Press And Dark Horse To Launch iPad Manga Services

By Ishaan . October 16, 2010 . 3:00pm


Yen Press already offer digital manga in the form of their Yen Plus manga magazine, which went from print to digital as recently as August. Come October, they’ll be extending their digital presence to the iPad with a new proprietary storefront.


“We know that people are keen to get manga on the iPad, and we are keen to provide it,” Yen founder, Kurt Hassler, revealed at the New York Comic-Con last weekend, as reported by “We are working with our Japanese licensors to try to get those agreements made, but in the meantime, we are diving in with some of our original works and some Korean series.”


Hassler reveals that the subject of digital distribution for manga was one that wasn’t even open for discussion with licensors until the last 6-8 months. “This is new territory for the publishers in Japan,” Hassler said.


Yen’s digital pricing will remain modest at $8.99 per digital volume, which, as point out, is far better than the current industry “standard” of $1.99 per chapter.


Meanwhile, Dark Horse Comics, too, are launching their own digital comics service across the iPod, iPhone and iPad. Like Yen’s storefront, The Dark Horse Bookshelf app will offer digital content at cheaper than the industry standard, with individual comics coming in at $1.49 per issue (down from the usual $2.00).


Dark Horse are trying some interesting experiments with their digital initiative. For one thing, they plan to offer an extensive list of free introductory #1 issues for their comic licenses, and also to bundle entire story arcs together for budget prices.


Dark Horse’s Bookstore app will launch in January 2011 with synchronized releases with print starting in February. No details regarding the pricing scheme for their manga licenses has been revealed yet.

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  • Well the only remaining things with Yen Press I get now are just Spiral: The Bonds of Reasoning (which I think ends in two volumes :( ) and Twilight Manga Adaptation (it, is, excellent !!! Young Kim is a great artist, lol), though I would still take anything in print…an iPad has such a large cost of entry.

    Hm I guess Soul Eater and Highschool of the Dead would be future purchases for me. Oh well its interesting, cant wait to see the execution of it.

  • How about expanding to Android too? Please?

  • WyattEpp

    I’m getting a little tired of useful applications and neat games being confined to iProducts. It’s like these companies don’t really want me to buy their stuff or something.

  • Joanna

    “Yen’s digital pricing will remain modest at $8.99 per digital volume, which, as point out, is far better than the current industry “standard” of $1.99 per chapter.”

    Well I think that really depends on how long chapters are. Some manga have really long chapters (3 chapters per volume – so around 6$). Either way, I think the price is too high for digital-only, it’s practically the same as a physical book. 5$ and under is what they should aim for

    • I’m with you on that it’s still high. I really think the trick is to make these things an impulse purchase like so many iPhone apps are. That probably means selling it by chapter at an impulse-buy-price, rather than going, “Hey, look! 9 bucks for the volume!”

    • You know Joanna, for the first time in a while, I think I might have to agree with you. Perhaps Im in the minority with thinking that, personally, if its is still going to be about 8.99 per digital volume, that I might as well pay 1 or 2$ more to get it physical.

      I think if it were $5 or less than I would be more interested in getting digital since there is more of a price difference.

      • Joanna

        haha, same here. I would much rather pay the extra 1-3 dollars (depending on conversion rate, since I live in Canada) and get a physical copy. I was really excited about digital manga because like others mentioned multiple times, having more than 200+ manga is becoming a big space issue (I don’t only have manga, I’ve got games and novels competing for space as well). :/

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