Report: Japan Bought 331% More Books on Phones in 2006

posted on by Egan Loo
Non-phone Internet sales of e-books, including manga, rose 70%

The Digital Content Association of Japan has announced on August 8 that the mobile phone sales of electronic books, including manga, grew 331.3% from 1.6 billion yen (about US$14 million) to 6.9 billion yen (US$58 million) in 2006. The non-phone Internet sales of electronic books grew 69.7% from 4.8 billion yen (US$41 million) to 8.1 billion yen (US$68 million). The association projects that mobile phone sales of e-books will increase to 11.7 billion yen (US$99 million) in 2007, compared to a projected 9.4 billion yen (US$79 million) for Internet sales.

Nikkei Business ITpro comments that these trends and the falling sales of magazines are signs of the manga industry's gradual shift from magazine serialization to direct online distribution. DC Comics had announced its investment in the online Japanese manga publisher Flex Comix in June. DC indicated that it will emulate Flex's strategy in Japan by serializing Flex's manga and other material online in North America.

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