iPad 3 vs. Nook vs. Kindle Fire: An Interesting Week In Digital Comics

This has been a huge week in the evolution of digital comics. Not only did DC Entertainment release its much appreciated dedicated app for its line of Vertigo Comics, this is also the week that Dark Horse Comics made its line of comics available for Nook and Kobo readers. There is  a recap on the Dark Horse news at the end of this post.

And, of course, all this news is timed for the release of iPad 3!

So, where does that leave the casual comics reader who has yet to make a significant leap into digital comics? Just a quick look at an Endgadget review from last November, which may seem to some like a million years ago, we see that even the most savvy reviewers are still figuring out what lies ahead in their comics reading experience.  The Great Recession rages on so that will drive some people away from comics altogether while it may not have any effect at all on some and, for still others, it may drive them to escape with even more comics reading. Anyway, if this economy is taking any bite out of you, you may not even be considering a new iPad 3. But would you consider an iPad 2? At $400, that’s going to be someone’s sweet spot.

Or maybe you’re down to deciding between the less expensive but not necessarily lesser devices: a Kindle Fire or a Nook Color. Now, that could be interesting since the Nook Color’s price has dropped to $169 and that may be even a sweeter spot. Right now, as I’m not special and part of the 99 percent, I just don’t feel totally ready to buy any new gadget. But, whether it is gifted to me, or I finally save up, I do plan to get something this year.

If you’re down to deciding between a Kindle Fire or a Nook Color, then you don’t get to enjoy the Vertigo app. But, overall, if you’re a DC Comics fan, then the Fire makes it easier for you. And if you’re a Marvel or Dark Horse fan, then the Nook makes it easier for you. I understand that the Nook actually has the best screen to view with even when you factor in the retina razzle dazzle of the iPad 3.

For my money, and my true enjoyment, I don’t see print ever being fully overtaken by digital. At the moment, I already get to read a lot of PDFs as it is on my trusty desktop or on a laptop. But, for all those moments on the go, like waiting for the bus, which you’ll never get back, or leisure moments like reading in a cafe, for all those valuable moments, some gadget is definitely handy. I have an older model Sony eReader and, I have to say, it has easily paid for itself in more ways than one. I’m sort of sorry that Sony isn’t exactly a high profile player in the digital comics wars. Anyhow, honestly, I am finding just reading a good book to be the most satisfying thing most of the time. Currently I’m reading “Moby Dick.” I highly recommend it. For one thing, if you are new to it, it’s really not like anything you might expect. I just discovered from our friends over at Star Seeker that Timur Bekmambetov, director of “Wanted” fame, is determined to harpoon the classic into an action movie. No, this novel is far more epic than an action movie and yet as down-to-earth as any worthwhile independent film. I believe Herman Melville’s mighty work will not go down without a fight and will leave Bekmambetov bloody for his efforts.

This is the Dark Horse news regarding Nook and Kobo:


MARCH 5, MILWAUKIE, OR—Just under a year after the launch of Dark Horse’s digital initiative, it is announced today that the company has expanded the number of platforms on which comics fans can access their favorite Dark Horse titles! After an incredibly successful first year of Dark Horse’s proprietary iOS app and digital storefront, Dark Horse is proud to partner with Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), the leading retailer of content, digital media, and educational products, to make a library of titles available on Barnes & Noble’s award-winning NOOK Tablet and NOOK Color™.

Dark Horse digital graphic novels are now available for purchase in the NOOK Comics™ store, featuring over 100 of the company’s top titles, like Mass Effect, Hellboy, Star Wars, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, SerenitySin City, and more!

“Making our content available on new platforms outside of the Apple iOS is an incredibly exciting proposition,” said Matt Parkinson, Dark Horse’s senior director of Marketing. “As we move into new areas and new devices, we look forward to the opportunity to find new readers. I can’t think of a better partner than Barnes & Noble, the leading retailer of digital content and media and the folks behind the number-one chain of bookstores in the country.”

“Barnes & Noble is committed to offering customers a broad array of digital comics and graphic novels. We’re excited to bring NOOK customers Dark Horse’s fan favorite digital collection of graphic novels,” said Theresa Horner, vice president of digital content for Barnes & Noble. “The high resolution of our VividView color touchscreen makes the action virtually jump off the page, and takes these graphic novels to a whole new level of entertainment.”

Starting today, the world’s Dark Horse graphic novels arrive on NOOK! Experience NOOK at any Barnes & Noble bookstore or at Nook.com. Look for more and more titles to be added every month!

To find a comic shop near you, call 1-888-comicbook or visit ComicShopLocator.com.

About Dark Horse Comics

Since 1986, Dark Horse Comics has proven to be a solid example of how integrity and innovation can help broaden a unique storytelling medium and establish a small, homegrown company as an industry giant. The company is known for the progressive and creator-friendly atmosphere it provides for writers and artists.  In addition to publishing comics from top talent like Frank Miller, Mike Mignola, Neil Gaiman, Gerard Way, Will Eisner, and best-selling prose author Janet Evanovich, Dark Horse has developed such successful characters as the Mask, Timecop, and the Occultist. Additionally, its highly successful line of comics and products based on popular properties includes Star Wars, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Aliens, Conan the BarbarianMass EffectSerenity, and DomoToday, Dark Horse Comics is the largest independent comic-book publisher in the United States and is recognized as both an innovator in the cause of creator rights and the comics industry’s leading publisher of licensed material.


MARCH 5, MILWAUKIE, OR—–Dark Horse continues to make headlines today, with news that the company’s best-selling titles are going beyond the iOS platform! Now, the largest independent publisher of graphic novels is pleased to announce a partnership with the top-selling eReading company, Kobo, to offer a library of nearly 100 titles available from Kobo.com to be read on the Kobo Vox eReader! This move follows an incredibly successful year of distributing titles digitally through Dark Horse’s proprietary iOS app, and corresponding digital storefront atDigital.DarkHorse.com.

“Kobo is the perfect partner for Dark Horse, because like us, they established themselves on the basis of innovation,” said Matt Parkinson, Dark Horse’s senior director of Marketing. “We couldn’t be more excited about the prospect of reaching new readers around the world with what we still believe to be some of the most exciting and dynamic storytelling the comics medium has to offer.”

“All of us at Kobo are thrilled to be adding Dark Horse’s amazing titles to our library,” said Michael Tamblyn, Kobo’s EVP of Content, Sales, and Merchandising. “Based on strong visual storytelling, comics are a great fit for the e-reading industry. This partnership truly marks a continuation of Kobo’s ‘Read Freely’ philosophy, where we’re dedicated to providing a world-class catalog of titles suitable for any market.”

The recently released Kobo Vox represents a new kind of eReader. Not only can book lovers read their favorite books, magazines, and newspapers in vivid color, but they also can connect with other readers to share their favorite passages via Facebook.

As of today, Kobo users can now read their favorite Dark Horse titles, including Mass EffectStar WarsSerenityBuffy the Vampire SlayerHellboySin City, and more, on their Kobo Vox e-reader anytime, anyplace. Look for Dark Horse comics and graphic novels available now atkobobooks.com/darkhorse, with new titles to be added every month!

To find a comic shop near you, call 1-888-comicbook or visit ComicShopLocator.com.

About Kobo, Inc.

Kobo Inc. is one of the world’s fastest-growing eReading services offering more than 2.5 million eBooks, magazines and newspapers– and counting. Believing that consumers should have the freedom to read any book on any device, Kobo has built an open-standards platform to provide consumers with a choice when reading. Inspired by a “Read Freely” philosophy and a passion for innovation, Kobo has expanded to nearly 200 countries, where millions of consumers have access to localized eBook catalogues and award-winning eReaders, like the Kobo Touch. With top-ranked eReading applications for Apple, BlackBerry, Android, and Windows products, Kobo allows consumers to make eReading social through Facebook Timeline and Reading Life, an industry-first social experience that lets users to earn awards for time spent reading and encouraging others to join in. Headquartered in Toronto and owned by Tokyo-based Rakuten, Kobo eReaders can be found in major retail chains across the globe.

For more information, visit www.kobo.com.

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