Sourcing manga online is all too easy. There are plenty of websites and apps available, however, most of them are not legal. As an anime and manga fan myself, I feel the least I could do is at least share and make use of the legal services.
What makes the app legal? They have the rights to distribute the works available on their platforms and they pay (or contribute towards) the original creator. All of the below apps offer free and paid-for content. Some content is free for a limited time or it becomes free after a set amount of time.
Either way, the apps have come up with a way to provide manga free for us completely legally – but there is always a catch. They need to make money which I feel is fair. How can we expect those creating the content we so badly want to work for free? Sometimes that catch is adverts (they make money through ad revenue). Or they offer a subscription and honestly they are not too expensive. Some apps even offer a ‘rental’ option as well. So you are able to rent the chapter for a set number of hours. Or you could outright purchase the chapter or volume.
Just by downloading and interacting with the free versions and features of legal platforms in the anime and manga industry, we as fans can help out without having to fork out a fortune.
With all of that said, here are 3 manga apps where you can read manga legally that I personally use.
1 Shounen Jump Manga & Comics
Shounen Jump offers most of their entire collection on manga that has been translated to English. The first few chapters of every manga are free as well as a few of the most recent chapters. Meaning that the chapters in between are not free to read. However, to read them, you can join the monthly subscription for R33 a month. This gets you 100 chapters every day that you can read.
For most people, 100 chapters a day is plenty. That is around 3 000 chapters per month. For a completely legal app that honestly contributes to the industry, I think and feel it is well worth it. However, if you are not into subscriptions, you can always purchase the digital version and volume of the manga.
2 Crunchyroll Manga
While Crunchyroll does not have the cleanest history they have turned themselves around. They now offer various services and apps such as providing anime and manga news, a legal anime streaming app and site and also a manga reading app.
The app offers every first chapter for free. However, if you wish to read on, you will need to be part of their premium membership. An added benefit of that is that you will have full access to all of their apps. Which means that you can watch their anime advert-free too. Crunchyroll manga have a few ‘exclusive’ titles like One Room which I have really enjoyed.
With Crunchyroll, I activate and deactivate my membership based on how often I am making use of the apps and sites each month.
Honestly, Webtoon is one of the most used apps I have ever owned and made use of. With it being 99% free with very few adverts it is a great app for free reading.
I know that it is technically not a manga app but it may as well be. I myself am accessing it daily, constantly finding new things to read and thanks to my patience I can wait a couple days/weeks for the few chapters that are ahead.
However, once or twice, maybe thrice I just had to know what happened next and purchased coins to read ahead. Purchasing coins can quickly snowball into a pricy experience, but with proper budgeting and such it is not a problem.
All of the webtoons on Webtoon are free to read.
Other legal apps include Lezhin, comiXology and Book Walker. Do you read manga through any legal platforms?