Category Archives: Technology

Ezra Claytan Daniels’ Upgrade Soul Gets an Updated App and Original Vinyl Soundtrack

Upgrade Soul

Ezra Claytan Daniels‘ graphic novel debut Upgrade Soul has been a hit earning praise and accolades since release. It has won widespread praise and award nominations for the comic book industry’s top honors, including The Dwayne McDuffie Award for Diversity in Comics and the Eisner, Ignatz, Harvey, and ‘Ringo Awards.

Timed for Halloween, Upgrade Soul gets an innovative, and updated, app as well as the release of an original vinyl soundtrack. Both the app and the soundtrack will be available for purchase October 25th, 2019.

Daniels spent a decade writing and drawing the graphic novel before it was published last year by Lion Forge. It was originally conceived as a digital graphic novel and published as an interactive iOS comic app, launching in 2012, complete with 3D picture-box effects, extra features, and unlockable content. The app was designed by Erik Loyer, a media artist and two-time Webby Awards Official Honoree, whose work has been commissioned by the Whitney Museum of American Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

Technology has changed in the years since the original app’s launch. That has enabled the team to finish the project as originally intended, with a rich interactive score, 3D picture-box effects, and seamless navigation. It’s not an enhanced version of the printed graphic novel, it’s its own thing.

The app featured an incredible original score by composer/hip hop producer Alexis Gideon, who is known for his work with the band Princess and his solo Video Musics series of animated operas. Gideon created the music for the Upgrade Soul app to seamlessly flow with and complement the interactive app, creating a wholly unique experience that’s a high water mark for digital comics and a standard-setter for the future of the medium.

And in October, for the first time, the trippy and ethereal soundtrack that accompanied the app’s initial launch will be available to the public outside the app. Chicago’s FPE Records will release the soundtrack in two formats: a regular black vinyl edition and a limited deluxe edition featuring translucent orange vinyl, red markings, and a signed print by Daniels. Of the latter, only 100 copies will be released worldwide. 

Upgrade Soul is the dark and surreal story of an elderly couple who volunteer themselves for an experimental scientific procedure intended to rejuvenate their aging bodies. When the procedure goes horribly wrong, creating physically disfigured but intellectually superior clones of the couple, the scientists, the couple, and their clones must grapple with existential questions of morality—with very real consequences. The book is a profound meditation on identity, and the ways society imposes restrictions based on our age, gender, race and perceived disabilities.

The Upgrade Soul app, which includes the first story’s chapter, is available as a free download. Throughout the month of October, the entire story can be unlocked for $6.99. Beginning November 1, the entire book can be unlocked for $7.99.

The Upgrade Soul Original Soundtrack Standard Edition, with black vinyl, retails for $18.00. The Upgrade Soul Original Soundtrack Limited Edition, featuring color vinyl, is exclusively available through FPE Records’ website, via Bandcamp or directly from Ezra Claytan Daniels at appearances. The Upgrade Soul Original Soundtrack Limited Edition retails for $45.00.

Marvel Unlimited Expands in October with War of the Realms, Tie Fighter, Cult of Carnage and more!

Marvel Unlimited, Marvel’s digital comics subscription service, offers members unlimited access to over 25,000 issues of Marvel’s classic and newer titles, delivered digitally through your desktop web browser and the Marvel Unlimited mobile app. With classic and newer issues added every week, here are some of the amazing Marvel titles coming to Marvel Unlimited this month:

Week of 10/7

War of the Realms #1

AGE OF X-MAN: PRISONER X #2
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #18.HU
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #8
CAPTAIN AMERICA #9
CHAMPIONS #4
COSMIC GHOST RIDER DESTROYS MARVEL HISTORY #2
DEADPOOL #11
DOMINO: HOTSHOTS #2
IMMORTAL HULK #16
MAJOR X #1
MARVEL SUPER HERO ADVENTURES: SPIDER-MAN – WEB DESIGNERS #1
MARVEL TEAM-UP #1
SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY ADAPTATION #7 SERIES COMPLETE!
SPIDER-GWEN: GHOST-SPIDER #7
STAR WARS #64
THE PUNISHER #10
UNCANNY X-MEN #15
WAR OF THE REALMS #1

Week of 10/14

Web of Venom: Cult of Carnage #1

AGE OF X-MAN: APOCALYPSE & THE X-TRACTS #2
AGE OF X-MAN: THE MARVELOUS X-MEN #3
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #19
ASGARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #8 WAR OF THE REALMS TIE-IN!
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #9
CAPTAIN MARVEL #4
DEAD MAN LOGAN #6
FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN #5
INVADERS #4
SPIDER-MAN/DEADPOOL #49
STAR WARS: AGE OF REBELLION – GRAND MOFF TARKIN #1
STAR WARS: AGE OF REBELLION – PRINCESS LEIA #1
SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #1
THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #43 WAR OF THE REALMS TIE-IN!
THE UNSTOPPABLE WASP #6
WAR OF THE REALMS: JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #1
WEB OF VENOM: CULT OF CARNAGE #1
WINTER SOLDIER #5 SERIES COMPLETE!
X-23 #11
X-FORCE #6

Week of 10/21

Star Wars: Tie Fighter #1

AGE OF X-MAN: NEXTGEN #3
AGE OF X-MAN: THE AMAZING NIGHTCRAWLER #3
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #19.HU
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #252 FACSIMILE EDITION
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #10 SERIES COMPLETE!
DAREDEVIL #4
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #4
MAGNIFICENT MS. MARVEL #2
MAJOR X #2
MARVEL’S SPIDER-MAN: CITY AT WAR #2
MEET THE SKRULLS #3
MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN #5
OLD MAN QUILL #4
SHURI #7
SPIDER-MAN: LIFE STORY #2
STAR WARS: AGE OF REBELLION SPECIAL #1
STAR WARS: TIE FIGHTER #1
THOR #12 WAR OF THE REALMS TIE-IN!
TONY STARK: IRON MAN #10
UNCANNY X-MEN #16
WAR OF THE REALMS #2
WAR OF THE REALMS: PUNISHER #1
WAR OF THE REALMS: WAR SCROLLS #1
WEST COAST AVENGERS #10 SERIES COMPLETE!
WOLVERINE: INFINITY WATCH #3

Week of 10/28

Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge #1

AGE OF X-MAN: X-TREMISTS #3
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #20
AVENGERS #18 WAR OF THE REALMS TIE-IN!
AVENGERS: EDGE OF INFINITY #1
BLACK PANTHER #11
BLACK WIDOW #4
DOCTOR STRANGE #13
FANTASTIC FOUR #9
HULKVERINES #3 SERIES COMPLETE!
IRONHEART #5
MARVEL COMICS PRESENTS #4
MARVEL RISING #2
MOON GIRL AND DEVIL DINOSAUR #42
MR. AND MRS. X #10
RUNAWAYS #20
SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME PRELUDE #2 SERIES COMPLETE!
STAR WARS: DOCTOR APHRA #31
STAR WARS: GALAXY’S EDGE #1
STAR WARS: VADER – DARK VISIONS #3
SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #5
THANOS #1
VENOM #13 WAR OF THE REALMS TIE-IN!
WAR OF THE REALMS: UNCANNY X-MEN #1
WOLVERINE: THE LONG NIGHT ADAPTATION #4

Not a Marvel Unlimited member? Join today!

Marvel Unlimited members have access to some of the greatest Marvel Comics featuring The Avengers, Spider-Man, Thor, Black Panther, Captain Marvel and more! With October’s update, Marvel Unlimited will also be expanding its back catalog with the following issues: DOCTOR STRANGE (1974) #38-56, MUTANT X (1998) #18-32, ADVENTURES OF THE X-MEN (1996) #7-12, and much more! This amazing service is accessible through Marvel Unlimited on the web and through the Marvel Unlimited app on iPhone®, iPad® and on select Android™ devices.

NYCC 2019: izneo is launching on Nvidia Shield and Android connected TVs during the New York Comic Con

izneo

izneo is coming to Nvidia Shield, right on time for the New York Comic Con. After the web browser interface, the smartphone and tablet and earlier this year the Nintendo Switch, izneo continues its strategy aiming to be available on the maximum number of platforms which allows readers to fully enjoy their passion for comics anytime, anywhere.

The platform saw more than 1.5 million books read last year with more than 370,000 reviews and comments having been posted by the readers on the site.

Owners of connected Android TV and media player Nvidia Shield are now able to enjoy on their big screens the full catalog of the digital comics marketplace izneo. The high quality of comics, European comics, mangas, and webtoons never looked so beautiful than on the big screens. Start reading on your TV and continue on your smartphone (or any other device) where you left of, the possibilities are limitless.

To enhance even more the reader’s experience, izneo recently added to its platform some personalization features. For example allowing users to pick their favorite book genres (comics, European comics, graphic novels, mangas, webtoons, kids) and themes (action, adaptation, biography, comedy, thriller, etc..). Readers will then discover a rich catalog with thousands of books based on their preferences would they be comics (Archie, Strangers Things, Umbrella Academy, Sin City..), European Comics (Blacksad, Valerian, Thorgal..) but also mangas and webtoons (Radiant, Wakfu..) and so on.. 

izneo offers two ways to access the high quality digital books. Izneo Premium is a monthly subscription with no contract offering more than 1,800 books for $7.99 with new books added every month. The rest of the catalog can be purchased for prices as low as $2.99 a comic, with frequent sales and promotions.

Marvel Unlimited Expands in September

Marvel Unlimited, Marvel’s digital comics subscription service, offers members unlimited access to over 25,000 issues of Marvel’s classic and newer titles, delivered digitally through your desktop web browser and the Marvel Unlimited mobile app. With classic and newer issues added every week, here are some of the amazing Marvel titles coming to Marvel Unlimited this month:

Week of 9/2

AGE OF X-MAN: X-TREMISTS #1
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #16
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #3
BLACK PANTHER #9
BLACK PANTHER VS. DEADPOOL #5 SERIES COMPLETE!
CAPTAIN AMERICA #8
CAPTAIN MARVEL: BRAVER & MIGHTIER #1
CLOAK AND DAGGER: MARVEL DIGITAL ORIGINAL – NEGATIVE EXPOSURE #3 SERIES COMPLETE!
DAREDEVIL #2
FANTASTIC FOUR #7
INVADERS #2
MARVEL COMICS PRESENTS #2
MOON GIRL AND DEVIL DINOSAUR #40
STAR WARS: DOCTOR APHRA #29
SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #3
WEST COAST AVENGERS #8
X-FORCE #3

Week of 9/9

COSMIC GHOST RIDER DESTROYS MARVEL HISTORY #1

AGE OF X-MAN: PRISONER X #1
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #16.HU
AVENGERS #16
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #4
BLACK ORDER #5 SERIES COMPLETE!
CHAMPIONS #3
COSMIC GHOST RIDER DESTROYS MARVEL HISTORY #1
DEADPOOL #10
DOMINO: HOTSHOTS #1
IMMORTAL HULK #14
KILLMONGER #5 SERIES COMPLETE!
MARVEL SUPER HERO ADVENTURES: SPIDER-MAN – SPIDER-SENSE OF ADVENTURE #1
MEET THE SKRULLS #1
STAR WARS #62
STAR WARS: AGE OF REPUBLIC – PADME AMIDALA #1
STAR WARS: VADER – DARK VISIONS #1
UNCANNY X-MEN #13
ZIGGY PIG – SILLY SEAL COMICS #1

Week of 9/16

AGE OF X-MAN: APOCALYPSE & THE X-TRACTS #1
AGE OF X-MAN: THE MARVELOUS X-MEN #2
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #17
ASGARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #7
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #5
DEAD MAN LOGAN #5
MAGNIFICENT MS. MARVEL #1
MARVELS ANNOTATED #2
OLD MAN QUILL #3
RUNAWAYS #19
SHURI #6
SPIDER-GWEN: GHOST-SPIDER #6
SPIDER-MAN/DEADPOOL #47
STAR WARS: AGE OF REPUBLIC – GENERAL GRIEVOUS #1
STAR WARS: HAN SOLO – IMPERIAL CADET #5 SERIES COMPLETE!
THE PUNISHER #9
THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #42
TONY STARK: IRON MAN #9
UNCANNY X-MEN: WINTER’S END #1
WINTER SOLDIER #4
WOLVERINE: THE LONG NIGHT ADAPTATION #3
X-23 #10
X-FORCE #4

Week of 9/23

AGE OF X-MAN: NEXTGEN #2
AGE OF X-MAN: THE AMAZING NIGHTCRAWLER #2
AVENGERS #17
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #6
CAPTAIN MARVEL #3
FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN #4
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #3
IMMORTAL HULK #15
JESSICA JONES – MARVEL DIGITAL ORIGINAL: PURPLE DAUGHTER #3 SERIES COMPLETE!
MARVEL’S SPIDER-MAN: CITY AT WAR #1
MEET THE SKRULLS #2
MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN #4
SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY ADAPTATION #6
SPIDER-MAN: LIFE STORY #1
STAR WARS #63
THOR #11
UNCANNY X-MEN #14
VENOM #12
WEST COAST AVENGERS #9
WOLVERINE: INFINITY WATCH #2

Week of 9/30

AGE OF X-MAN: X-TREMISTS #2
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #18
AVENGERS NO ROAD HOME #7
BLACK PANTHER #10
BLACK WIDOW #3
DAREDEVIL #3
DOCTOR STRANGE #12
FANTASTIC FOUR #8
HULKVERINES #2
INCREDIBLE HULK #181 FACSIMILE EDITION
INVADERS #3
IRONHEART #4
MARVEL COMICS PRESENTS #3
MARVEL RISING #1
MOON GIRL AND DEVIL DINOSAUR #41
MR. AND MRS. X #9
SPIDER-MAN/DEADPOOL #48
SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME PRELUDE #1
STAR WARS: DOCTOR APHRA #30
STAR WARS: VADER – DARK VISIONS #2
SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #4
X-FORCE #5

Not a Marvel Unlimited member? Join today!

Marvel Unlimited members have access to some of the greatest Marvel Comics featuring The Avengers, Spider-Man, Thor, Black Panther, Captain Marvel and more! With September’s update, Marvel Unlimited will also be expanding its back catalog with the following issues: NEW MUTANTS (1983) #62-70, DOOM 2099 (1993) #24-39, UNCANNY ORIGINS (1996) #1-7, X-FACTOR (1986) #27-32, and much more! This amazing service is accessible through Marvel Unlimited on the web and through the Marvel Unlimited app on iPhone, iPad and on select Android devices.

Disney and Charter Team Up to Stop Streaming Account Sharing

Disney+

While everyone fawns over the Disney+ announcements at D23 the likelihood it’ll cost you a bit more than you think is being missed. Disney and Charter Communications are working together in an attempt to stop multiple people from using a single account to access streaming video services. There’s a chance you won’t be able to share your Disney+ account with your friends. There goes splitting the bill.

Charter is the second-biggest cable company and their new distribution deal allows customers to purchase Hulu, ESPN+, or Disney+ directly from Disney or through Charter’s Spectrum television service.

If you purchase through Charter, there’s a twist.

As part of the deal, the two companies will work together to prevent you from sharing your login with friends if you purchase through Charter. The two used the word “piracy” in the announcement. Don’t be surprised if this is expanded to purchases directly through Disney as it’s clearly on their mind.

This deal also allowed Charter to continue to carry Disney television channels like ABC, Disney, ESPN, FX, National Geographic, and more. As expected, Disney is flexing its muscle post-purchase of 20th Century Fox. Expect this to come to a cable provider near you as other deals are renewed.

Welcome to media consolidation and monopolies. Hope you enjoy your X-Men and Fantastic Four because it’ll cost you.

SDCC 2019: ComicHub Brings Indie Comic Store Data to NPD BookScan Starting in 2020

At the ComicsPRO Fresh Start breakfast, ComicHub, the fast-growing Point of Sale (POS) and Retail Information Solution for comics shops, announced that it has reached an agreement in principle with The NPD Group to make ComicHub the first supplier of POS data for US independent Comic Shops to NPD BookScan, creating an integrated view of the actual sell-through of bound comics and graphic novels in the US for the first time. The definitive agreement is expected to be signed by both parties on or before August 15, 2019.

Comic shops were one of the last independent book sales that wasn’t captured in BookScan.

Under this new agreement, ComicHub reporting retailers will also have access to BookScan data to help them understand what is going on in the larger market, so they can better engineer themselves to compete in today’s competitive environment.

ComicHub’s mission is to help build a stronger direct market in brick-and-mortar comic shops by using available data.

Sales of bound Comics & Graphic Novels (C/GN) have far out-performed the general book market in traditional book trade channels in the last five years, according to NPD BookScan, posting a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 12% since 2014, and growing from sales of 12M to 21M units during that time. By comparison the overall US Book market grew a modest 2% during the same period. C/GN category is up a further 7% in 2019, led by sales of Juvenile Fiction, Manga, and YA Fiction, which are up 11%, 15%,
and 26% year-over-year respectively.

ComicHub is the only Retail Information Solution of its kind in the comics industry which integrates Point Of Sale, Consumer Apps (web, iOS and Android), Email Marketing, E-Commerce Web Stores, and Publisher Analysis and Marketing tools to create a powerful solution for the entire comics industry.

Comic Blitz Folds into Cinedigm’s CONtv App

And there was one less? Sort of? Comic Blitz, which dubbed itself “the Netflix of comics” is no more, having been absorbed into parent company Cindedigm‘s CONv App. CONtv is now known as CONtv + Comics and promises a “less janky” experience along with more for your money including video.

CONtv is a geek-centric subscription-based video streaming service with a curated collection of sci-fi, horror, fantasy, anime, cult, and grindhouse movies all complete & uncut. And on top of that, they have loads of episodes of anime, classic cartoons, and other cool TV content.

CONtv + Comics is available for $5.99 a month. The new app includes a new “cleaner” look, with “improved” navigation, flow, and expanded functionality.

ComicBlitz will officially be shutting down July 31st, 2019.

SDCC 2019: Today, Join Graphic Policy’s Founder for the Innovations in Comics Panel

San Diego Comic-Con 2019

San Diego Comic-Con 2019 is a little over a week away, and we’re excited to not only cover the convention but also moderating a panel.

Join our site’s founder, Brett Schenker, for the “Innovations in Comics” panel.

It takes place Saturday July 20, 2019 from 1:00pm to 2:00pm in Room 9.

Check out the full panel description below and come on by, say “hi,” and take part in this interesting discussion.

Love comics? Love technology? Hear from some of the leaders of both fields as they discuss ways to “increase the pie” for the comics industry, as well as innovations in technology that allow us broader and great access to comics than ever before. Panelists Jordan Plosky (founder, ComicBlitz), Atom Freeman (Sales & BizDev, ComicHub), Shing Yin Khor (Ignatz Award winner, Thought Leader at Kickstarter), and Nick Coglianese (founder, Key Collector Comic App) will give attendees an in-depth look at some new technology, ideas, and innovations on the horizon. Moderated by Brett Schenker (founder, Graphic Policy).

SDCC 2019: Skinit’s 30% Off Sale on Comic and Anime Themed Skins

Skinit is running a sale through July 22 for 30% off all of their Marvel, DC Comics, and anime skins.

Skinit’s mission is to enable anyone to express their individual style while protecting their devices from surface wear, dirt, scuffs and scratches.
Tens of thousands of fandom-pleasing designs are available, including featured licensed designs from Marvel, DC Comics, Dragon Ball, Attack on Titan, My Hero Academia and other beloved comics and anime franchises, which are all on sale (30% off!) in honor of SDCC week festivities.

Any of these designs can be formatted into a form-fitting skin for virtually any smartphone, tablet, laptop, gaming consoles and controllers, even headphones and home devices. Perfect for standing out in a sea of fans.
So go ahead and create a matching superfan aesthetic for your phone, laptop, and gaming system, featuring your favorite characters. Skins are super easy to apply, and always residue-free, so they can be removed cleanly in case you want to change up your look again later.

Details about the sale: 

SDCC 2019: Join Graphic Policy’s Founder for the Innovations in Comics Panel

San Diego Comic-Con 2019

San Diego Comic-Con 2019 is a little over a week away, and we’re excited to not only cover the convention but also moderating a panel.

Join our site’s founder, Brett Schenker, for the “Innovations in Comics” panel.

It takes place Saturday July 20, 2019 from 1:00pm to 2:00pm in Room 9.

Check out the full panel description below and come on by, say “hi,” and take part in this interesting discussion.

Love comics? Love technology? Hear from some of the leaders of both fields as they discuss ways to “increase the pie” for the comics industry, as well as innovations in technology that allow us broader and great access to comics than ever before. Panelists Jordan Plosky (founder, ComicBlitz), Atom Freeman (Sales & BizDev, ComicHub), Shing Yin Khor (Ignatz Award winner, Thought Leader at Kickstarter), and Nick Coglianese (founder, Key Collector Comic App) will give attendees an in-depth look at some new technology, ideas, and innovations on the horizon. Moderated by Brett Schenker (founder, Graphic Policy).

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