VIZ Media has launched a brand new service that may make English variations of the most recent chapters of choose manga titles out there to subscribers as quickly as they’re launched in Japan. The service, referred to as VIZ Manga, options manga revealed by Shogakugan and Shueisha and prices $2 a month. Its present “simulpub” or simultaneous publication catalogue has 15 titles that embody Inuyasha sequel Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon and Mao by Rumiko Takahashi. Followers may even learn their three most up-to-date chapters totally free. The subscription service additionally provides followers entry to a library with over 10,000 chapters, together with Junji Ito’s GYO and Uzumaki, Yuu Watase’s Fushigi Yuugi, Rumiko Takahashi’s Ranma 1/2 and Ai Yazawa’s Nana.
“Because of the explosive success of the Shonen Leap digital service, this new improvement will exponentially increase VIZ Media’s digital providing,” the corporate mentioned in its announcement. The Shonen Jump subscription service got here out in 2018 and supplied followers the prospect to learn its newest releases as quickly as they arrive out in Japan. VIZ Media mentioned that is the primary time English-speaking followers can get titles from the publishers — legally, that’s — on the identical time Japan does. The hope is more likely to steer followers away from unauthorized translations, which may come out as quickly as just a few hours after a chapter is revealed in Japan, and to in the end handle the business’s piracy downside.
In keeping with the Tokyo-based Content material Abroad Distribution Affiliation, the Japanese manga business lost 395.2 billion (US$2.9 billion) to 831.1 billion Yen (US$6.2 billion) in 2021 on account of on-line piracy. Korean webtoons have additionally been steadily rising in popularity over the previous few years whereas the Japanese manga business has been shrinking. Webtoons are digital comics optimized for smartphones, and their publishing format makes them a lot simpler to devour nowadays. Manga has all the time been a print-first business, however publishers have been searching for methods to increase their digital presence.
In the mean time, VIZ Manga is just out there within the US and Canada, accessible by way of the corporate’s Android or iOS app and its web site. (Subscriptions, nevertheless, can solely be bought by way of the app.) VIZ Media plans to increase the service’s availability to different areas, although, so followers outdoors these two international locations might need to maintain an eye fixed out for future bulletins.
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