When Apple's much-anticipated iPad launches in the United States on April 3, the media slate's highly organized e-book application will feature "Comics & Graphic Novels" among its top-tier categories, Forbes.com reports.
Citing findings by the Busted Loop mobile media research firm, the website states that Apple's iBookstore will designate about 20 main categories, including "Fiction & Literature," "Reference" and "Cookbooks." Below those will be more than 150 sub-categories; "Manga" will fall under the comics section.
The iBookstore content sales and delivery system is viewed as a major selling point of the iPad, but until today it had been unclear how much an emphasis might be placed on comic books.
When the iPad was unveiled in January, Apple announced it had partnered with five publishers to produce content for the iBookstore: HarperCollins, Hachette Book Group, Macmillan, Penguin, and Simon & Schuster. All of those houses have imprints that publish graphic novels or manga (for instance, Hachette's Yen Press imprint publishes Twilight: The Graphic Novel and Yotsuba&!, while Penguin's Puffin division produces a line of literary adaptations). Macmillan and Simon & Schuster are also major book-market distributors of graphic novels by other publishers but there's been no mention of whether those agreements could extend to the iBookstore.
More publishing partners are expected to be added after next month's launch.