Feb 18

evangelionAppliya Brings Evangelion to the iPhone and iPod Touch – Millions of iPhone and iPod Touch owners have found ways to extend the functionality and fun of their devices with everything from map applications to lightsaber simulators. But if you’re an anime fan outside of Japan, the iTunes App Store offers few options that represent the anime and manga stories that you love. One Tokyo-based company called Appliya Inc. is seeking to change that with an aggressive strategy to bring anime franchises to the international mobile market. Their first venture is an exciting one Appliya has obtained a license to develop and distribute the world’s first iPhone and iPod Touch applications based on one of the most popular anime franchises, Evangelion, and they plan to submit their first apps to Apple in February 2009.

Appliya’s initial offerings for Evangelion will be “casual” apps that utilize the visual style, characters, and storyline from the Rebuild of Evangelion films. The applications will be the result of a joint production effort between Appliya and Japanese media company Broccoli Co., Ltd. The apps will take advantage of the innovative touch screen on the iPhone and iPod Touch, as well as the device’s camera, calendar functions, and clock.

Neon Genesis Evangelion first aired on Japanese television in 1995, and then went on to become a multi-billion dollar international anime franchise. The story is getting a modern upgrade with the new Rebuild of Evangelion project, a series of four movies that retell the original story with new animation, new characters, and some new plot twists. The release of the first movie, Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone, was an exciting event, and the film won many awards, including the 2008 Tokyo International Anime Fair award for Anime of the Year. The second movie in the series, Evangelion: 2.0 You Can (Not) Advance, is scheduled for release in Japan in the summer of 2009. Appliya’s license with the franchise producers provides them with unprecedented use of elements from the new movies including character designs, weapons, and the signature giant cyborgs known as the Evas.


Appliya’s applications should appeal to an international fanbase that has long been starved of digital Evangelion merchandise. Anime fans outside of Japan often feel neglected since it takes months or years for the hottest anime products to reach them, if they are exported at all. Evangelion is just one of many anime franchises with video games, applications, and other digital products that never left Japan, but Appliya’s apps will be released to a wider range of audiences, and in many cases fans will have the apps before the Rebuild of Evangelion DVDs are even available in their area.

Appliya has released 26 iPhone applications since October 2007, and they have recently partnered with Japanese mobile industry giant Softbank Mobile Corp. to bring the unique elements of Japanese culture to an international audience through mobile applications. Their efforts include exclusive licensing deals with major anime and manga producers, so expect to see more anime-related products from Appliya in the future. Appliya will also have collaborations with Japanese artists and photographers, Haraju-ku fashion related applications, Akihabara otaku related apps, and other applications focused on more traditional aspects of Japanese culture. You can learn more about the Neon Genesis Evangelion franchise at the official Japanese site (http://www.evangelion.co.jp/), or the official American site for the Rebuild of Evangelion movies, which includes a link to the trailer for Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone at (http://www.funimation.com/evangelion/).


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