SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Apr 18, 2013) - Digital content channel and free-to-use mobile app NARR8 has released an all-new in-app purchase system for iPad and iPad Mini today. The purchase system lets users unlock episodes of their favorite content, as part of the app's developing business model to monetize some of the best content available on mobile. This new feature works with the in-app currency, "NARRs" tokens, which reveal features, series, collectibles, and more, and can be gained either through daily use of the application, or, starting today, by purchasing them -- similar to the model of in-app purchases in free-to-play mobile games. However, as always, NARR8 will continue to be free to download and use, and the first two episodes of each series will always be free to download. In addition, this new update introduces a convenient new autoplay feature for its motion comic series, which now lets users continuously stream episodes of motion comics with a single tap of their touchscreen.
The first step in NARR8's evolving business model was the introduction of NARRs tokens, which users accrued automatically by using the app each day. This virtual currency has helped users unlock exclusive collectible items associated with each series. Now, users can also buy "NARRs" to unlock new episodes.
Opening the app every day will accrue the full weekly bonus of 120 NARRs per week. The cost of one new episode will be 100 NARRs, which can be purchased for $ 0.99. Users can purchase bundles of 100, 300, 500, or 1000 NARRs for $ 0.99, $ 2.99, $ 4.99, and $ 9.99, respectively. Auto play for motion comics costs 100 NARRs.
These new features are available in international versions of the NARR8 app for iPad and iPad Mini, including Russia, English-speaking countries, Spain, Argentina, Mexico and Columbia. While NARR8 launched one short month ago in the last four countries, the app has been ranked the No. 1 Entertainment app for iPad in Spain and in nine Latin American countries -- Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru, El Salvador, Uruguay, and Venezuela. NARR8 has acquired more than 700,000 installs, and the number of its active users exceeds 300,000 monthly. NARR8 president Alexander Vaschenko predicts that in the second half of 2013, the number of mobile users with NARR8 installed on their devices will exceed one million.
The next stage in NARR8's expanding business operations will be the launch of its programming interface for third-party publishers, such as independent art studios, publishing houses, and media outlets. The platform will be made available for content creators to partner with NARR8 by building their own interactive content, uploading it to the NARR8 app, and participating in revenue sharing from the proceeds of their content's sales.
"As part of our evolving business strategy, we recently revamped NARR8's tech to include gamification elements," said NARR8 president and founder Alexander Vaschenko. "Now, additional features like autoplay and unlocks for new episodes will make the NARR8 experience even better, since users now have the option to buy NARRs directly. But, as mentioned, NARR8 will otherwise remain completely free to read and use. We're excited to continue evolving the NARR8 product and look forward to opening up the app to talented third-party teams in the future!"
NARR8 offers a variety of multimedia content including motion comics, interactive novels, and nonfiction series in a next-generation eBook format that brings stories to life with the help of fluid animation, original music, high-resolution artwork, and interactive special effects and features. With this new feature, readers will still be able to earn NARR8's virtual currency, NARRs, for free by using the app normally, but they can now purchasing this currency directly, allowing busy readers to more-quickly reveal brand-new features and additional content.
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Digital Publisher NARR8 was founded in October of 2011 by Alexander Vaschenko, formerly of Mail.ru and Astrum Online, with initial funding of $4 Million (U.S.) through IMI.VC Venture Company, a Moscow-based investment firm led by Internet entrepreneur, Game Insight board member, and former Mail.ru and Astrum Online visionary Igor Matsanyuk. Headquartered in Moscow, Russia with satellite operations in San Francisco, NARR8 currently has over 130 employees encompassing key business functions, and features creative staff which includes veteran artists, game developers, and content creators throughout ten internally owned and operated studios.