UPDATE: DC Entertainment Launches Single Issue Comics And Graphic Novels On iVerse Media

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Ah yes and here is the other shoe dropping: all of DC’s monthly comics will now be available on iVerse and backlist is coming.

While iVerse has been a distinct #2 player to ComiXology’s 800 lb. gorilla, the era of more digital choice seems to have begun. DC’s periodical comics are available many places—CX, Amazon Kindle Store, Apple iBooks, Barnes & Noble Nook Store and Google Play—but only Comixology among comics only apps carried them. And we love all our pals at all digital companies, but a little competition is a good thing.
 

DC Entertainment, home to iconic Super Heroes including Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman, announced today its current slate of monthly periodical comics are now available for download on iVerse Media’s ComicsPLUS App. Back catalog titles will be added to ComicsPLUS in the coming weeks and months.
 
“We want to be wherever comic fans are building their libraries and this new partnership with iVerse Media brings bestselling DC Entertainment titles from DC Comics and Vertigo to a broad, new digital audience,” stated Senior Vice President of Sales and Business Development, Derek Maddalena. “The fantastic new features in the ComicsPLUS app, paired with our iconic characters like Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, deliver a great digital reading experience.”
 
The newly-updated ComicsPLUS 8.0 app includes several key features including a new “uView” enhanced reading experience, enhanced search functions and presentation, a new Event Timeline view, parental controls and more. Plus, all purchases can be made within the application itself.
 
“All of us here at iVerse have grown up with these amazing characters and stories, and we could not be more excited to be bringing them to ComicsPLUS.” said iVerse Media CEO, Michael Murphey. “New features like uView are going to be game changers for ComicsPLUS and we are incredibly excited to have DC Entertainment as a major part of it all.”
 
Broad digital distribution has remained a cornerstone of DC Entertainment’s business, leading to extensive growth in both digital and print sales over the past four years as digital availability attracts new readers and comic fans alike. DC Entertainment has the widest digital distribution of any comic book publisher and was the first major publisher to make its entire line available same-day digitally with the launch of DC Comics – The New 52.
Currently, English versions of DC Entertainment titles are available for download through iVerse Media. Download the ComicsPLUS App to get the latest periodicals, graphic novels and collected editions from DC Comics and Vertigo.

DC Comics to be available on the new ComicsPLUS 8.0 app

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As we first reported after New York Comic-Con, iVerse, the other guy in the digital comics landscape, is planning a HUGE update of their app. And ComicsPLUS 8.0 is here. It’s available now in the iTunes store, and for Android and the web.

Now, the big question is what publishers are going with them. Amazon recently started sending out renewal contracts to various publishers, and the terms are not as favorable as Comixology’s were—they are more like Amazon’s.

Well, if you look at the above graphic, you get a big clue—DC Comics are prominently shown. Although not mentioned in the press release, we’re told that more information on this is coming imminently. DC was long a Comixology exclusive, and their moving to another platform is the first big shakeup of the Amazon acquisition—somehow we think it’s not the last.

iVerse Media is proud to announce the release today of ComicsPLUS 8.0 for iOS 8.  This All-New application has been built from the ground up for iOS 8 with a variety of exciting new features and additions.
 
“With ComicsPLUS 8.0 we’ve rebuilt the app from scratch to make it easier than ever to discover great digital comics from the biggest publishers in the industry.” Said iVerse CEO Michael Murphey, “New features like uView and importing your personal comics collection provide a unique experience unlike any other digital comics application available today.”
 
With uView, users can now create cinematic reading experiences directly on their iPads for their personal collections.  Using the uView editor, anyone can create a uView experience for his or her comics in just a few minutes and save it for future use.
 
Advanced Search allows users to see what content is trending (based upon what other ComicsPLUS users are searching for), and to save their own searches for the future. Combined with our new in-app Filters and Parental Controls, users have never before had more control over how they browse and discover digital comics.
 
Graphic Novel Rental – another new feature for ComicsPLUS 8.0 allows users to rent select graphic novels for 24, 48, or 120 hours.  Rented comics  can be viewed offline without the need for an Internet connection.
 
ePub, PDF, CBR, and CBZ file support have also been added to the application, allowing users to import into the app DRM-Free products from their personal collections for the very first time.
 
“We could not be more excited about this release.” Mr. Murphey continued. “ComicsPLUS 8.0 is an extraordinary experience.  And it just the beginning of where this next generation of our application is heading. More new and enhanced features are on the way – we’re constantly looking to improve our app, and make it the best possible experience for publishers, creators, and fans.”
 
Features Summary —
— All-New Design
— Graphic Novel Rentals w/ OFFLINE READING
— uView enhanced reading experience
— Enhanced Search w/ Popular and Saved Search Options
— Import Digital File support (ePub, PDF, CBR, CBZ)
— uView creation and editing for imported files
— In-App Parental Controls
 
Updates for ComicsPLUS for Android and the Web are also available today adding uView reading support for both platforms.
 
ComicsPLUS 8.0 is available now in the iTunes App Store.


 

iVerse to relaunch ComicsPLUS in November with uView, import and more

 

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We all know that Amazon’s acquisition of Comixology changed the digital comics landscape. While the benefits that Amazon can bring for Comixology are evident, and still developing, it wasn’t without some steps backwards. When Comixology stopped making in-app purchases due to Amazon/Apple tensions, many publishers saw a drop in digital comics sales.

As we’ve noted before, other players are stepping in to promote their services.

So it should come as no surprise that ComicsPLUS, the digital comics app from iVerse that has long been the second player in the digital comics world, is getting a big makeover starting in November. iVerse CEO and owner Michael Murphey gave us a peek at the new app at New York Comic Con, and it has several shiny new features, including a new uView enhanced reading experience; enhanced search functions; a streamlined interface that offers comics series not only in chronological order but also a “Storyline” view that offers all the books in a given storyline. And the new app will also offer the ability to import any drm-free PDf, ebook or iTunes file into the service where it can be streamlined via uView and be searchable under its name.

uView is the ComicsPLUS version of “Guided View” and I’m told it does not conflict with the patent that Disney holds on that version of “enhanced viewing experience,” to give the non trademarked name for panels that zoom and flow on a tap. It’s entirely user controlled, and based on the preview Murphey gave me, it’s dead simple to use – you basically pinch and zoom to get panels moving in your preferred way. I’m not sure now many comics readers will want to go through all their comics and “uView them up” – but publishers or creators can also use this system themselves. In other words, yet another job for the intern.

I asked Murphey if this would lead to an iVerse version of Comixology’s “Submit” program and he pointed out that “we don’t turn people away.” Although they occasionally reject material that has problematic content, anyone can sell their comics via ComicsPLUS, and uView will offer a way for creators to take control over the viewing experience.

The “Storyline” feature is perfect for people who follow mainstream comics events. The revamped iVerse interface offers a very streamlines view of issues in a series, with the newest one on top. You can also see all the issues that tie in to a storyline—in reading order. Like I said, this is very useful if you’re catching up on Final Crisis or any Big Two event from the last 15 years. It would also be useful for something like Love and Rockets which has a twisting storylines that even experts have a hard time following. (Note, Fantagraphics books aren’t available on iVerse, I’m just spitballing here.)

The search function is basically a smoother application, and the goal is eventually to have a more “Netflix-like” interface. So if you read Punisher, for instance, you could be offered “more comics featuring amoral hitmen.”

Finally, there’s the import function, which for a digital hoarder such as myself could be useful. Basically any legally purchased book you own in epub or pdf format (possibly others, my notes are a bit hazy here) can be imported into the ComicsPLUS app and indexed along with your purchases in the app.

iVerse is definitely putting some muscle into this update, which will roll out starting in November. Some of the features will go live in early 2015. Of course, there is still the matter of publishers: iVerse offers Dynamite, Valiant, Marvel trades and many other publishers. But not DC at this point. Valiant has the biggest parnership with iVerse thus far, having put their entire library on the platform.

Is there room for another digital comics platform? I’m told that Apple would be thrilled to have their piece of the digital comics pie again: Comixology was frequently the top grossing app for iPad, and it firmly put digital comics on Apple’s radar. It was Amazon’s dislike of giving Apple their 30% cut of in-app purchases that led to them being removed from Comixology’s app. (You can still buy comics directly on the CX website, however.) So yeah, there are some pennies to be made there. If digital comics become some kind of status symbol in a tug of war between Apple and Amazon, it means more money thrown into the pot.

I’m also told several publishers are considering being available on multiple platforms for obvious reasons. Amazon’s feuds, price wars and heavy handed tactics are all well and good when you want to buy cheap pants, but you don’t want to get caught on the wrong side of the equation.

iVerse has developed into a player in the library market so it will be interesting to see where this goes.

 

iVerse to relaunch ComicsPLUS in November with uView, import and more

We all know that Amazon’s acquisition of Comixology changed the digital comics landscape. While the benefits that Amazon can bring for Comixology are evident, and still developing, it wasn’t without some steps backwards. When Comixology stopped making in-app purchases due to Amazon/Apple tensions, many publishers saw a drop in digital comics sales. As we’ve noted…

iVerse to relaunch ComicsPLUS in November with uView, import and more was originally published on The Beat

Valiant brings entire library to iVerse

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It begins.

We’ve been hearing a ton o’ rumors about comics companies jumping aboard iVerse—probably the second largest dedicated digital comics platform—in the wake of Amazon’s acquisition of Comixology. While Amazon is great at selling books, publishers want to avoid a Hachette-like stand off and other weight throwing maneuvers that Amazon is known for. While it’s not clear if iVerse and its ComicsPLus app have the infrastructure standing by to take on a big company, it’s an option…and a good one.

And so, Valiant has just announced that they are bringing their complete library—past and present—to iVerse and ComicsPlus. Titles offered include X-O Manowar, Bloodshot, Archer & Armstrong, Shadowman, Rai, etc. The first issues of the current titles are now available for free just to get you going. The deal runs throughout the month of August.

“Valiant has been consistently producing some of the best comics in the industry since their relaunch in 2012,” said iVerse Media founder and CEO Michael Murphey. “We could not be more proud to make their remarkable catalog and amazing characters available in ComicsPlus.”

In addition to the ComicsPlus app and website, Valiant’s titles will be made available to librarians and their patrons everywhere via the ComicsPlus: Library Edition app, which makes thousands of high-quality titles accessible to school and library patrons on any device, anywhere, and at any time.

“Valiant’s number one priority is to make our characters and content available to the largest audience possible, and, via our new partnership with iVerse, we have an incredibly exciting and important new channel to continue that mission,” said Valiant Publisher Fred Pierce. “With a potential readership that’s measured in the millions, we hope to win over even more fans to some of the most critically acclaimed comic books being produced anywhere today, just as we have month in and month out in comic book stores around the world.”

I expect this to be just the first of many ongoing iVerse announcements.

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Top Cow offers free previews through iVerse

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Top Cow is teaming up with iVerse for a Launch Try ‘em before you Buy ‘em Program for Artifacts, Witchblade and the Darkness. For a limited time you can download the jumping on points for these long-running series.

“We’re thrilled to help spread the word on these exciting series,” said iVerse CEO Mike Murphey in a statement. “We like what Top Cow is doing and want to do whatever we can to help fans find out what which series they like best.”
 
To jump on go to your iVerse app and go to the “more” section in the ComicsPlus app, click on “redeem” and enter in these codes.  

Artifacts #14-22 Bundle = TCARB12
Darkness Bundle #101-107 = TCDRB12
Witchblade Bundle #151-161 = TCWRB12

The promotion expires on March 5, 2013. 

 

iVerse announces Comics+ 4.0

201112220022.jpgDigital comics provider iVerse has just rolled out a new version of their interface Comics+:

New features include:

Completely redesigned Store and Bookshelf
Brand new “Showcase” view for your collections
Overlay graphics to mark books as purchased, reading and completed (can be turned off in the “More” or “Settings” section)
You can now delete books directly from the bookshelf
Live search of your collection
Improved in-store search
Better store organization and layout
Complete graphical redesign
“Keep Reading” pop-up at the end of each book (when connected to the internet) which guides you directly to the next issue

You can download the new version at iTunes.

EXCLUSIVE: Diamond teams with iVerse to offer in-store digital comics sales

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Bam, the other shoe has dropped: as long anticipated, Diamond is starting a program to offer digital comics sales. Comics will be offered day-and-date exclusively through participating retailers — with a 30-day exclusive for these stores. Products offered include regular downloads for $1.99 with “Digital Plus” comics — extras offered with a print purchase — for $.99, all in hopes of becoming a revenue stream for stores and publishers alike.

Sales will go through iVerse’s system, already used extensively by IDW and Archie. Thus far the publishers who have signed up include those who don’t have their own storefronts — Marvel, DC, Image, Boom and Dark Horse are notably absent from the list of publishers, although Diamond hopes they will join in some fashion.

This is clearly an initiative in its beginning stages — the timing is tied to Thursday’s ComicsPRO retailer meeting, which kicks off Thursday.

Gee, I wonder what they’ll be talking about. Full PR below:

Imagine a future where readers and fans can visit their local comic shop to buy not just physical copies of new comics, but also digital editions that aren’t available anywhere else, and can be viewed in multiple platforms including iPhone, iPad, web, and others.

That future is coming soon as Diamond Comic Distributors (DCD) — the world’s largest distributor of English-language comic books, graphic novels and related pop-culture merchandise — joins forces with iVerse Media — the pioneer of digital comics and creators of the popular ComicsPLUS reader — to empower 2,700+ brick and mortar comic shops to sell digital content. Plans call for day-and-date digital editions to sell exclusively at comic shops for 30 days for about $1.99, with “Digital Plus” editions – digital copies available with the purchase of a hard copy – expected to sell for $.99.

Thanks to a simple but technologically robust code redemption system, retailers will need only an internet connection and a printer to participate. They will have no inventory risk or carrying costs and will retain a significant portion of each sale, with billing occurring on their regular DCD invoices. Retailers with websites will also be able to profitably sell a wide range of digital back issue comics and graphic novels.

Diamond Executive VP and COO Chuck Parker had this to say: “Digital comics are creating opportunities for publishers to grow the comic market. Our task, as we see it, has been to structure a program that empowers comic retailers to play a role in this growth and, at the same time, make money selling digital content. We think we’ve accomplished that with this initiative, and we look forward to feedback from retailers and publishers alike to help us succeed in this endeavor.”

iVerse CEO Michael Murphey added: “We are proud to be helping Diamond develop systems which will immediately enable comic shop retailers at any level of technical ability to easily sell digital comics. We are also very excited about the potential of this new venture to create many creative print-to-digital and digital-to-print promotional possibilities.”

Publishers already on-board with the program include: Ape Entertainment, Archie Comics, Aspen Comics, Bluewater Productions, Broadsword Comics, Hermes Press, IDW Publishing, Moonstone Comics, NBM Publishing, Papercutz, Red 5 Comics, Studio Foglio, Titan Books, TOKYOPOP, Top Cow Productions and Top Shelf Productions. Talks with other publishers are continuing, and the first comic shop digital editions are slated to debut in July, 2011.

“Direct Market retailers have always been IDW’s most important market and we’re very pleased to be working with Diamond and iVerse to include them in the digital distribution of our books,” said Ted Adams, CEO/Publisher IDW Publishing.

Dave Bowen, Director of DCD’s new Diamond Digital division, said: “We invite all publishers to join our effort, whether with all of their books or a portion of their line. All we ask is that they give comic shops a 30-day head-start on selling whatever digital content they chose to make available through the program.” Bowen added that interested publishers are welcome to contact him ([email protected]) or Michael Murphey ([email protected]) for more information.

Further details with be forthcoming at the ComicsPRO Annual Meeting being held February 10-12 in Dallas, and at Diamond’s Retailer Summit to be held March 17-18 in Chicago, in conjunction with the C2E2 show.