Okay okay. Dark Horse Comics isn’t really a startup. But I could argue that any number of its titles are. And it is in Portland. Well okay Milwaukie. Fine. But you know what? When someone in Portland releases a really cool mobile app? That’s like a startup right there. So I’m totally covering this.
That’s right. Portland’s Dark Horse—the third largest comic publisher in the world—has officially released Dark Horse Digital, its new bookshelf app for iPhone and iPad.
Now it’s not like Dark Horse comics haven’t been available on the iPhone. The problem has been solving the whole distribution and charging problem. And while the promise of Dark Horse Comics on the iPhone has been rumored since last year, it’s only now that they’ve perfected and released the Dark Horse Digital app.
You see, up until now, you could have Dark Horse comics on your phone. A lot of Dark Horse on your phone. Screen after screen after screen. That’s because you had to download them by title by title by title by… well, you get the picture. Each title came as a separate app. And that meant a whole iPhone full of comics apps.
But with the new Dark Horse Digital app, you get a bookshelf for your iPhone, iPad, or Web browser. So there’s only one app. With hundreds of titles.
It’s a big step forward for Dark Horse Comics. And one that—quite honestly—makes the distribution of their sometimes niche and obscure titles more viable.
As a publisher, we take this change seriously and are preparing for a future in which digital sales are a significant part of our publishing strategy. To that end, we are launching the Dark Horse Digital Store with an initial offering of hundreds of comics. Our approach is to make the books we publish available to as wide an audience as possible, and to one day have our entire library available for your smart phone, iOS device, or personal computer. One need only look at a comic on Apple’s iPad to see the potential of digital publishing.
The idea that Dark Horse’s entire library will one day be available to readers around the world minus the problems often associated with physical distribution is an exciting one. No publication will fall out of print, or fall prey to uneven or inadequate supply upon release. In addition, by creating our own apps and digital store, Dark Horse stays in control of both content and quality.
The app is free. And there are even some free titles. Other titles begin at $0.99.
To download the app, visit Dark Horse in the App Store. An Android version is promised soon. For more information, stay tuned to the Dark Horse Digital blog, like Dark Horse on Facebook, or follow @darkhorsecomics on Twitter.