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Rakuten Group Launches Smartphone App for “R-TOON” Digital Comic Service

New App Enhances Access to Exclusive Comics, Including Co-Produced Original Works
Japan
r 4755.TSE Mid and Small Cap 2000 Tech 350
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Rakuten Group has unveiled a new smartphone app for its digital comic distribution service “R-TOON” on January 25th, making it easier for users to access a wide array of vertically read digital comics. This latest development includes original works created in collaboration with partner companies, enhancing the digital comic reading experience.

“R-TOON” offers a unique feature where users can enjoy one episode of vertical reading digital comics for free daily, co-produced with partners such as Shonen Gahosha, Toon Cracker, Straight Edge, and Nitroplus. The service also allows for the purchase of individual episodes. The newly launched app version of “R-TOON” introduces the ability to buy “R-TOON” exclusive coins and receive bonus coins, facilitating immediate access to subsequent episodes after completing one. This addition builds on the web version of “R-TOON,” which started operating in November 2023.

The service features a diverse range of original works co-produced with partners, such as the fantasy-filled “Antique Magical Tools Whisper to the Lady Alice ~ Records of the Cases of the Royal Antique Dealer~,” and the heartwarming fantasy “The Villainous Lady Wants to Get Revenge on Her Father, the Grim Reaper! ~On the 2nd lap of life, the voice of the father’s heart is so cute that it unexpectedly becomes a love story!?~.” Additionally, Rakuten will distribute popular, previously unreleased Korean dramas and works in Japan, including 2023’s notable “Let the sun shine on you today ~ Psychiatric nurse’s diary” and the AI-themed “Chacha on the Bridge,” winner of the 2019 Korean SF Award Grand Prize.

“R-TOON” also features the first full-color digital comic adaptation of the martial arts fantasy puppet show “Thunderbolt Fantasy Touri Kenyuki,” supervised by Gen Urobuchi of Nitroplus. Looking ahead, Rakuten plans to release a variety of genres, encompassing both original and co-produced works.

Moreover, Rakuten is leveraging its Rakuten Content Central infrastructure to publish these original works across diverse domestic and international media. There are also plans to develop derivative content and merchandising. This initiative is part of Rakuten’s broader strategy to integrate with the Rakuten Ecosystem, which connects over 70 services and centers on a membership base exceeding 100 million.

Rakuten’s commitment to working with creators and partner companies reflects its dedication to delivering a wide range of entertainment experiences through content. This move into digital comics represents an important expansion of Rakuten’s entertainment offerings, catering to the growing demand for diverse and accessible digital content.

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