Cartoon-strip publishers, whose printed-matter sales have been losing steam, are actively embracing mobile media because cell phones are what young people are spending their time and money on. Cell phone sites for cartoon strips are booming, as is demand for popular titles. But at the same time, some famous “manga” artists are bypassing publishing houses to offer their works to “keitai” (cell phone) sites directly. (See WWJ’s initial report on this topic — from Sept. 2003!! — here – Ed.)
Toppan Printing Co. in April 2003 became one of the first firms to offer cartoon strips via cell phones. It currently offers 55 titles, including Reiji Matsumoto’s “Ginga Tetsudo 999″ (“Galaxy Railway 999″) in collaboration with major publishers. Full story here.