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German and Portuguese Now on YouVersion.com

Thanks to our awesome YouVersion community of volunteers, German and Portuguese are now available as interface options at www.youversion.com. Select the language you’d like from the lower left corner of the reader, or go directly to de.youversion.com for German or pt.youversion.com for Portuguese.

What this means is that you can interact with our Bible tools completely in German, directly from our website, or in the Bible App™ on iPhone/iPad/iPod touch, Android, or BlackBerry. In the same way, you can use Portuguese on our website and also in the Bible App on Android and BlackBerry. Of course we already offer the Luther Bible 1912 (DELUT) in German and the Almeida Atualizada (AA) in Portuguese, with more versions in more languages coming.

If you have friends or loved ones who might enjoy engaging with God’s Word in German or Portuguese, please share this exciting news with them. If you’d like to help us get our interface into your language, let us know what you can do at our volunteer sign up. The YouVersion volunteer community truly is changing the world.

Audio Bibles Now in Beta from YouVersion in the Bible App for Android

Android Audio Now in BETA!The Bible App™ for Android can now read select translations to you. As soon as you’ve visited the App Market and updated the Bible App on your device to version 3.0, you’ll be able to listen to the English Standard Version (ESV), the New International Version (NIV), the New American Standard Bible (NASB), and La Biblia de Las Americas (LBLA). Hear the Word of God spoken to you as you’re driving or exercising—or even just listen as you read along.

When the version you’re using has an audio option available, the Bible App displays the speaker icon next to the menu icon in the Reader. Simply tap it to start listening. Our audio Bibles use streaming sound files, so you’ll need to be connected to your service provider or to the Internet when you listen.

Because we’re still developing the audio tools and working to add more versions, we consider these features to be in Beta. So even if you don’t see audio for your favorite translation yet, keep checking back; more audio versions will be coming in the days and weeks ahead. (By the way, we’re working to bring this same functionality to our other platforms too; more announcements are coming.)

Also in this release: For the first time—and once again thanks to the hard work of incredible YouVersion volunteers—we now have the Bible App interface translated into Slovak and Polish on Android. If you’d like to see it in your language too, and you can help us translate it, please complete our volunteer form.

Please share the news with your friends!

Featured in “The App List” from The Sunday Times: The Bible App by YouVersion!

YouVersion is honored that the Bible App™ has been recognized by The Sunday Times in their definitive guide to the world’s best 500 apps (subscription required). The Sunday Times online is one of the most popular national newspaper sites in the UK. Regular Sunday Times app reviewers and experts in relevant fields selected their favorite apps, based on their practicality, their usefulness, or even just how fun and addictive they are. And the Bible App made the list!

From the very beginning, our primary goal with the Bible App has always been to make it as easy as possible for people to engage with the Bible as part of their everyday lives. Whether you’re using a reading plan to make the most of your time in Scripture, connecting with your friends online about your experiences reading the Bible, or using notes to journal and share how God’s Word is speaking into your life, the Bible App is always as close as your mobile device.

It means a lot to us at YouVersion to be included on The Sunday Times’  list. We love the Bible, and we’re always excited when more people will have the opportunity to discover God’s story for their lives.

The Bible App: 1 Billion Minutes Reached

1 Billion MinutesA couple of weeks ago, we updated you on our progress toward our goal for the YouVersion community to read the Bible for 1 billion minutes in 1 month. We also promised we’d let you know as soon as we reached that billion, so we could celebrate together. Yesterday, February 15, we just passed 1 billion minutes of engaging with Scripture using the Bible App™. While it took 46 days instead of the 31 we had hoped for, it’s still nothing short of extraordinary. Going all the way back to the Bible App’s launch in July 2008, this period represents the most people reading the most minutes in the shortest amount of time that we’ve ever seen. It’s reason to rejoice.

We celebrate big numbers when they happen because they’re exciting, and because they can help us establish some perspective. But of course what’s important to us is not numbers—it’s you. Every download, every account created, every status update and tweet, every reading plan subscribed to, each represents a person, a human being, connecting with the Scriptures. We love the Bible, and our single-minded goal is now, as it has always been, to help as many people as possible engage with God’s Word as a natural part of their everyday lives. Thank you for reading in the Bible App. Thank you for being a part of what God is doing.

The best thing about a billion more minutes…is that it’s only the beginning.

Available Now from YouVersion: Offline Versions on the Bible App for BlackBerry

Today we’re pleased to announce the single feature requested most by our BlackBerry users: Access to Bible translations for use offline. You can immediately download this newest version of the Bible App™, v. 3.0, through your browser or by visiting BlackBerry App World.

Other features. Our previous BlackBerry release included German, French, and Traditional and Simplified Chinese; this time, we’re adding to that Russian and Portuguese. And speaking of languages, the default Bible version the Bible App displays reflects the language you set for your device. Finally, you should notice when you open it that the Bible App loads much faster now.

Important! To download an offline translation, your device must:

  1. Be running BlackBerry 5.0 OS or newer.
  2. Have an SD media card with at least 50 MB of free space.

What’s offline use? In the past, BlackBerry users have not had access to Bible translations unless connected to the Internet or your service provider. Now, for the first time on BlackBerry, once you’ve downloaded a Bible version to your BlackBerry’s SD card, you’ll be able to read it anytime, anywhere—whether you’re online or not.

How you can get your free offline versions:

Make sure you’re connected to the Internet or to your service provider. Then, from the Bible reader:

  1. Select the top bar, where the current translation is presently displayed.
  2. All versions display in alphabetical order by language. Any translation with a download icon (a box with an arrow pointing down) means it’s available as an offline version. Select that version’s download icon.
  3. Follow the instructions and select the large Download button.

Limited Time: NIV Available Offline…Free on YouVersion!

2011 marks the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. To commemorate this milestone achievement, which made the Bible available in the common language of the people, throughout 2011, YouVersion will roll out events and opportunities that will help you more easily access, engage and share the Bible. The first of these events is that Bible App™ users will be able to download the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible. Made possible through a special partnership with Biblica and Zondervan, this offer will only be available for a limited time.

Beginning THIS SATURDAY, February 12, at 8:00 PM U.S. Eastern Time (GMT-5), and lasting for 400 hours, you’ll be able to download the NIV to your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Android device. When you download the NIV, that means you’ll be able to read it even when you can’t connect to your service provider or to the Internet. This special promotion will end on March 1, at 12:00 PM noon U.S. Eastern Time (GMT-5).

Downloading offline versions:

When the NIV becomes available on Saturday, here’s how you’ll be able to get yours:

iPhone/iPad/iPod touch:

Make sure you’re connected to the Internet or to your service provider. Then, from the Bible reader:

  1. Tap the top bar, where the current translation is presently displayed.
  2. All versions display in alphabetical order by language. Any translation with a download icon (a green box with a white arrow pointing downward) means it’s available as an offline version. Tap that version’s download icon.
  3. Follow the instructions and tap the large Download button.

1. Tap current translation 2. Tap download icon3. Tap Download button

Android:

Make sure you’re connected to the Internet or to your service provider. Then, from the Bible reader:

  1. Tap the box at the top right that displays the version short code.
  2. All available Bible versions display. Any translation with a download icon (an arrow pointing down) means it’s available as an offline version. Tap that version’s download icon.
  3. After a few moments, a different icon displays next to the short code, indicating your download is complete.

1. Tap current translation2. Tap download icon3 Download is complete

For Valentine’s Day: 5 Days to a Better Marriage

Reading PlansPrepare for Valentine’s Day this year by reading our brand-new Devotional, “Love and Marriage,” together with your spouse. Today is February 7, so if you start tomorrow or the next day, the two of you can finish up this 5-day plan just in time for the big day. Each day, “Love and Marriage” leads you through a passage about how God views this important commitment, then follows up with additional ideas to help you discuss your relationship in a Scriptural context. (If you’re using the Bible App™ to read, you’ll find “Love and Marriage” under “Topical.”)

If you haven’t been much of a Bible reader in the past, then you really should try Reading Plans. They’re a terrific tool to help you engage with God’s Word and even to develop a daily habit. When you choose a Reading Plan, YouVersion gives you an easy schedule with a little to read each day. With more than 60 plans you can choose from—and lots more on the way—you’re sure to find topics that interest you.

Each Reading Plan description tells you what it covers and how long it will take. We have plans that take you all the way through the Bible in a year, or just select parts, even specific topics and daily devotionals. Whether you want to learn, get perspective, or focus your time with God in a certain area, Reading Plans are a simple way to help you read through God’s Word.

4 Offline Versions You Can Get Right Now

A common request we receive at YouVersion is for Bible versions that you can read on your mobile device, even in those times when you can’t get a connection to the Internet or to your service provider. Today, in a special partnership with The Lockman Foundation, we’re pleased to announce several new translations available offline, effective immediately:

  1. New American Standard Bible (NASB)
  2. Amplified Bible (AMP)
  3. La Biblia de las Américas (LBLA), and
  4. Nueva Biblia Latinoamericana de Hoy (NBLH)

    (formerly called Nueva Biblia de los Hispanos)

But don’t wait: Each of these versions will be available as a free download for a limited time only. Get yours through the Bible App™ on iPhone and Android before May 31, 2011!

How you can get your free versions:

Download IconiPhone/iPad/iPod Touch: From the Bible reader, tap the top bar, where the current translation is presently displayed. All versions display in alphabetical order by language. (You’ll find New American Standard and Amplified Bible under EN for English, and La Biblia de las Americas and Nueva Biblia Latinoamericana under ES for Español. Note: If you don’t see the one you’re looking for, try tapping Refresh.) Tap the download icon (a green box with a white arrow pointing downward) on the right and follow the instructions.

Android: From the Bible reader, tap the box at the top right that displays the version short code. All available Bible versions display. (You’ll find New American Standard and Amplified Bible under English, and La Biblia de las Americas and Nueva Biblia Latinoamericana under Español.) Tap the download icon (with an arrow pointing down) on the right.

5 Billion Minutes

When huge things happen in the YouVersion user community, we love sharing them so we can celebrate together. And today, we’re thrilled to announce that collectively, users of the Bible App™ have blown past yet another massive milestone:


You’ve read the Bible for more than 5 billion total minutes!

It was a little over a year ago that we announced that the total number of minutes read using the Bible App™ had crossed one billion. Just seven months later, we announced that number had doubled, as we passed two billion minutes together. Then, in our 2010 Year in Review, after only six more months, we told you that even that number had doubled, with more than 4 billion total minutes read.

We’re convinced that when people spend time reading God’s Word, lives are changed. His small still voice speaks through it, giving us His wisdom and insight. We are privileged to share with you in the work that God is doing. Thank you for engaging with Scripture through the Bible App by YouVersion.

In Celebration of Lunar New Year 庆祝中国农历新年

Whether you call it Spring Festival, Chinese Lunar New Year, or simply Chinese New Year, this year, this most important of Chinese holidays will take place tomorrow, February 3. To prepare for this event, over the past several months, incredible YouVersion volunteers have been working together with our team to bring Traditional and Simplified Chinese to the Bible App™and to YouVersion.com. Now, wherever they are, Chinese readers can experience God’s Word in their “heart language,” not only in the Bible translation they’re enjoying, but in many of YouVersion’s interfaces as well. 管你是否称它为春节,中国的农历新年,或者就称之为中国新年,今年中国最重要的节日,就是今天,2月3日。为了这一节日,在过去的几个月中,YouVersion 志愿者们一直在努力工作以便推出简体中文和繁体中文版的圣经应用程序。不管在哪里,华人都可以用他们的“母语”阅读神的话语,不仅可以读中文版的圣经,还可以浏览中文版的 YouVersion 界面。

For thousands of years, the Chinese Lunar New Year has been a celebration to release the past, an opportunity to wish for peace and genuine happiness for all people. Because of its rich tradition and powerful message, Chinese New Year is the most popular of all holidays for Chinese-speaking people all over the world. 几千年来,中国农历新年都是一个辞旧迎新的庆典,是一个为人民祈求和平和幸福的时刻。因为其悠久的传统和丰富的内涵,这个节日对世界各地的华人而言都是最受欢迎的节日。

2011 is the Year of the Golden Rabbit, or Xin Mao. The rabbit symbolizes both wisdom and goodwill. This year is anticipated to be filled with good luck, calm and peace. During the traditional Spring Festival celebration, Chinese families and friends will gather to exchange gifts and spend time together, expressing loving thoughts and warm tidings for each other. 2011年是农历辛卯年或兔年。兔子象征了智慧和友好。华人希望这是一个幸运年,是和平幸福年。在传统的春节庆祝过程中,中国家庭将团聚在一起,互赠礼物,相互表达关心和美好祝福。

Our vision has always been to make the Scriptures freely available and as easy to use as possible, for as many people as we can. We believe the Bible represents the gift of God’s wisdom and His words to all of us. This Chinese New Year, please let all of your friends know—through direct conversations, phone calls, emails, on Facebook and Twitter—about this wonderful opportunity our language partners have given us to share the free gift of God’s wisdom and goodwill with our Chinese friends everywhere. 我们的异象一直是将圣经以最便捷的方式,免费送达到更多的人手中。我们相信圣经代表了神的智慧,是神给我们大家的礼物。值此中国农历春节之际,请通过面对面的交流,电话,邮件或者 FacebookTwitter 等方式,让您所有的朋友共享我们的中文翻译伙伴帮助提供给华人的免费新年礼物— 使用 YouVersion 随时随地地分享神智慧的话语和祝福。

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