Otaku USA Magazine
Japanese Manga Apps In Fierce Competition

Despite its reputation as a futuristic land of robots and high-speed trains, Japan actually trails behind the States in quite a few technological areas, like widespread wifi or internet banking.

One area in which Japan seems to be catching up to the west is in offering up smartphone-based manga. A host of new apps have debuted in recent days, allowing readers access to both professional and would-be professional manga, says the Asahi Shinbun.

Take smartphone game maker DeNA Co., whose Manga Box app (also available in English) pushes both popular titles like Kindaichi Case Files and titles only available on the service, like Spoof on Titan.

The Comico app from NHN PlayArt Corp takes a slightly different tack, allowing amateur manga authors to upload their works. When titles become popular they start earning money, and one Comico manga, Nar Doma, is even getting an anime adaptation this season.

Finally, popular messenger app Line, as well as Shonen Jump publisher Kodansha have gotten into the smartphone manga mix with their own apps.

If you’re interested in the changing business behind how manga is sold in Japan, definitely check out the full story over at Asahi.

Left to right: Manga Box, Comico, Line Manga

Source: Asahi Shinbun

Matt Schley

Matt Schley (rhymes with "guy") lives in Tokyo, and has been OUSA's "man in Japan" since 2012. He's also written about anime and Japanese film for the Japan Times, Screen Daily and more.