Sony Japan has finally begun to divulge some details about their PSP/PSN manga distribution service. According to the AnimeNewsNetwork article, 11 major publishers and roughly 100 titles are signed on for digital distribution via the PlayStation Network starting in December. The publishers will include such big names as Kadokawa Shoten, Shueisha, and Bandai Visual. Not all titles have been disclosed at this point, but some of the highlights from the list are Sgt. Frog, Naruto, Honey and Clover, Doraemon, Love Hina, Neon Genesis Evangelion, and The Melancholy of Suzumiya Haruhi. The full list can be found at AnimeNewsNetwork’s website.
The list is quite extensive and covers plenty of genres. Japan has already supported digital distribution of manga to cell phones; so, this is an easy logical leap in the Land of the Rising Sun. Currently, there is no indicaiton of if and when a similar service will show up in North America or Europe, but I don’t see why it wouldn’t happen. However, there are no guarantees about which titles will be available when the service crosses the Pacific. The PSN already offers some episodes of anime for purchase; so, adding manga isn’t too much of a stretch. My biggest concerns about digital manga distribution still holds, though. I really don’t know if I would enjoy reading it on such a small screen. It’s the same issue I have with e-book readers like the Kindle. I enjoy my real books with their real size, real texture and the real scent of ink and paper. I guess it’s almost time for me to start telling kids to get off my lawn.
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