Owners of Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch devices have been downloading millions of games, utilities, books, and tools from Apple's recently launched iTunes App Store. Now, starting later this year millions of iPhone/iPod Touch owners will have the opportunity to download digital comics from established industry professionals and studios, as well as new and rising comic book stars through iVerse Media.
Comics are of course already available on mobile phones via servcies such as ROK Comics, but this is the first service delivering specifically to iphone. While the sales of iphones are still miniscule compared with other handsets, the hype for the Apple device has been enormous and the Apps Store has been a huge success both for Apple and software creators alike.
"We have developed an extremely simple iPhone Application that allows us to display comics that have been specifically formatted for the iPhone/iPod Touch." said iVerse Media owner Michael Murphey. "What we're doing is creating new comics, and adapting existing comics into a format that makes reading comic books an enjoyable and eas experience on these devices. There's no "zooming" or "pinching" required. All you have to do is flick your finger."
Comics adapted using the iVerse Media software will be available in the iTunes App Store for as little as $.99. Some titles will be released free of charge.
"Creators and Studios will be able to set the final prices on their titles, but we're expecting most standard length titles to be around $.99, and we're encouraging creators to give away the first issues of their titles to allow new readers who may not be familiar with comics, but are iPhone/iPod Touch owners, to give comics on the devices a try."
"With Digital Comics on the iPhone/iPod Touch we have access to a world wide audience, no printing costs or print run minimums, and it doesn't take 3 months to get the title from in the catalog to on sale in a store. Each title will be featured as its own application in the App Store, and will be backed up onto the readers desktop or notebook computer each time they sync their device."
iVerse Media says it is currently discussing comic adaptions and new creations from a variety of industry professionals and studios, and is accepting submissions from new creators. Details on submission requirements can be found at: www.iversecomics.com/submissions/
Earlier this month, PJ Holden and Al Ewing announced the launch of their own iphone-friendly comic, Murderdrome, also intended to be released via the Apps Store, but in his latest Lying in the Gutters column Rich Johnston reports the project's violent content has run foul of "community standards", even though equally violent movies are also available from the service.
The pair are not alone in suffering problems over e-comics censorship: creator Brian Kirsten has reported having similar problems with PDF Comic publisher Wowio, now owned by Platinum Studios.
The iVerse submission guidelines make no mention of restrictions on content and indicate all rights will remain with the creators.
• Established creators and Studios wishing to contact iVerse about adapting existing comics, or creating new titles can do so at www.iversecomics.com/contact-us/