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Now Available: Beta Version of the Bible App for Windows 8!

The Bible App™ for Windows 8 on Samsung Slate

The Beta version of the Bible App™ for Windows 8 is one of fewer than 100 apps now available in the Windows Store. And of course as always, the Bible App is 100% free. If you’re running the Windows 8 Consumer Preview on a compatible device, please go check it out. We’d love you to hear from you on Facebook or Twitter!

You can learn more about Windows 8 Consumer Preview at Microsoft’s website, or even watch their video to see the new Windows 8 interface in action.

 

The Bible App™ for Windows 8 on HP Tablet

 

In this Beta version of the Bible App for Windows 8, you’ll find most of the features you’ve already come to expect from the Bible App on other platforms—now specifically designed to take full advantage of the rich user experience made possible by an exciting new generation of Windows 8 tablet devices!

New Bible App for BlackBerry Adds Bookmark Labels, Reading and Connection Tweaks

The Bible App™ for BlackBerry on BlackBerry StormYou can get version 3.7 of the Bible App™ for BlackBerry right now in BlackBerry App World, or by directly downloading it to your device. We’ve done a lot of tweaking to improve performance in this release, as well as adding several convenient new features:

Label Your Bookmarks. Now you can add labels to your bookmarks, so you can categorize them however you want. For example, you might create labels for topics like “Faith” or “Parenting,” or reminder labels like “Memorize” or “Share.”

Sort Your Bookmarks by Label. Quickly find just the passage you’re looking for. Once you’ve created labels for your bookmarks, you can easily list them in label order.

Select Multiple Bookmarks. Managing your bookmarks on BlackBerry has never been easier. With this release, now you can select more than one bookmark at a time, so you can highlight them, apply labels to them—and even remove several at once.

The Bible App™ for BlackBerry on BlackBerry Bold

Easier Reading. The Bible App for BlackBerry previously allowed you to choose from one of three preset font sizes. But now you can specify the precise font size you want so you can make the most of your device’s screen resolution.

More Connection Tweaks. Sometimes when your network coverage is unreliable, if you try to do several things at once, your BlackBerry may drop requests and then never complete them. New in this release, the Bible App now saves each request in a queue and monitors for a clean connection. And when you get a strong signal, it sends just one request at a time—rather than several at once. What this means is that now, when you can connect, more of your tasks will actually be completed, and in the order you initiated them.

If you love the BlackBerry universe as much we do, then you’re probably aware of some of the unique challenges presented by the diversity of its devices’ capabilities and the network’s complexities. We’re committed to constantly improving the Bible App’s performance on as many BlackBerry devices as we realistically can, whether that means simplifying code to make functions faster or applying technical workarounds to address common network connection issues.

Please share the news of this Bible App for BlackBerry release with your friends. To truly get the most from the Bible App for BlackBerry, you’ll need a free YouVersion account, which takes just a couple of minutes. In exchange, you’ll get immediate access to more than 200 Reading Plans (in 10 languages!), Notes, Bookmarks, and so much more. And we’d love to hear your stories about the Bible App for BlackBerry on Facebook and Twitter!

2011: YouVersion’s Year in Review

2011: YouVersion’s Year in Review

2011 was another wild, wonderful year for the YouVersion community. At the beginning of January, the Bible App™ had been installed on almost 13 million unique devices. But by the end of 2011, it had well over 37 million installs. It’s clear that—together—we’re each part of a revolution in Bible engagement happening all over the world.

Even as we look forward to all that God will do through the YouVersion community during 2012, first we’d like to pause and look back on all we shared during 2011…


January: We launched 2011 with a challenge to read 1 billion minutes during January, suggesting Bible reading accountability with friends and online, and even offering practical ideas about times to read. The Mashable Awards named YouVersion as a finalist, and the Bible App was named in the all-time top apps on iTunes.

February: Although it took 46 days for us to hit one billion minutes, the YouVersion community saw a remarkable 172% reading increase during that time—and also reached more than 5 billion minutes read overall. Volunteers translated the YouVersion experience completely into Chinese, just in time for Chinese Lunar New Year, and the Bible App appeared on the prestigious The Sunday Times’ definitive The App List.

March: Three new Reading Plans launched for Lent, just one part of an initiative that saw us more than double overall Reading Plans. Volunteers played a critical role in reaching the world with God’s Word, and for our part, we added new Bible translations.

April: Just as the Bible App was installed on its 5 millionth Android device, the Bible App for iOS (iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch) got its largest overhaul since its launch. We made available twice as many versions and almost doubled the number of languages. Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional launched, and we encouraged the community to spend time in God’s Word for Easter.

May: Our global flash mob to read the KJV in 400 seconds was so successful that together we read through it… 8 times! A special live webcast celebrated 20 million installs and more than 150 Reading Plans in 10 languages. The brand-new YouVersion Technical Support website launched, and we shared how the community could help.

June: People just like you were reaching others through the Bible App, and another story from the YouVersion community encouraged even more to share. The entire YouVersion experience launched in Simplified and Traditional Chinese. YouVersion users together bookmarked more than 20 million Bible passages.

July: Russian was the next complete YouVersion language launch, and the YouVersion community shared more stories about how the Bible App continued to change lives.

August: The next complete language launch was in Korean. Rewritten from scratch, the all-new Bible App for Windows Phone released with a full feature set comparable to YouVersion’s other major platforms.

September: Brazilian Portuguese became the next language to receive the YouVersion-wide experience, and YouVersion celebrated its fourth anniversary.

October: The Bible App had been installed on more than 30 million unique devices. The Bible App for Java was completely rewritten, bringing its features more in line with YouVersion’s other platforms, and German became the next complete language launch.

November: 7 billion people on Earth represented profound opportunities. Dutch was the tenth complete YouVersion language launch. Joyce Meyer’s Daily Devotional, Promises for Your Everyday Life launched, and a special infographic helped illustrate how much happens across YouVersion during just one minute. A special live webcast covered The Other 16 and YouVersion’s need for more volunteers.

December: YouVersion’s next complete language launch was French. The Bible App appeared in iTunes’ “best-of” Rewind 2011, both for iPhone and for iPad, and the YouVersion community completed 1 million Reading Plans. Our annual Global Share the Bible Day tradition continued.


Thank you for your part in the YouVersion community’s success during 2011. If you compare this year to last year, it’s immediately apparent that the Bible App and the YouVersion community are healthier than ever. And we’re convinced that it’s still just the beginning.

It’s a joy and an honor to get to do what we love… making God’s Word freely available to as many people as possible, no matter where they live or what language they prefer.

Won’t you join us?

The Bible App for Android: New Release Packs in Convenience, Control

The Bible App™ Dashboard Launcher on a Google NexusBrand-new Version 3.7* of the Bible App for Android is in the Android App Market now. While we’ve fixed some bugs in this update, more importantly, we’ve brought you several great new features:

  • Reading Plan Reminders. Schedule the Bible App to pop up your Reading Plan whenever it’s most convenient for you.
  • User Profile View. Coming for the first time to the Bible App for Android, now you can work with your account settings all in one place—name, profile image, contact information, and more. You can even browse your Friends’ profiles and the profiles of people who are following you.
  • More Privacy Controls. When people view your profile, you can control whether they can see the reading plan(s) you’re subscribed to.
  • Better Language Support. We’ve improved the way Bible text displays for Greek, Armenian, Khmer, and Bengali.

We’ve even integrated a few commonly-used features directly into the Bible App, previously available only through the YouVersion.com website:

  • Password Reminder. If you forget your YouVersion password, you can have the Bible App send a message to your email of record to help you reset it.
  • Password Change. Change your password from right inside in the Bible App.
  • Notification Preferences. Tell YouVersion which of your account actions you want to trigger messages to you.

Spread the word! The Bible App for Android makes it easy to share your journey through the Bible with your friends—from inside the app—whether you’re posting to Facebook or Twitter, or sending an email or text. Consider showing your friends the Bible App on your device, or even offering to help them install it on theirs. A new release of the Bible App can be a great conversation starter!


*This release supports Android version 1.6 and higher, as well as Apps2SD.

New Features and Fixes for Bible App for iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch)

Profile Settings page on the Bible App™ for iPhone v. 3.7Release 3.7 of the Bible App™ for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch is available now in the iTunes App Store. We’re introducing two convenient new features in this latest release:

  1. User Profile View. Now for the first time, you’ll be able to review and change your account settings all in one place—like your name, your avatar image, your contact information, and more. You can even browse your Friends’ profiles, and the profiles of people who are following you.
  2. Sign Up With Google. If you already have a Google account, you can sign up for your free YouVersion account using your Google login, right inside the Bible App. This makes creating your account one simple step, since you won’t need to verify your email address.

We value your feedback! When the YouVersion community reports issues to us—whether through our Support website, Facebook, or Twitter—we try to investigate each one, prioritizing them according to which ones are affecting the most users. For example, here are the main challenges we’ve fixed in release 3.7 of the Bible App for iOS:

  • Language Change. When you changed languages in your Bible App Settings before, it could cause the app to crash.
  • Residual Popups. Sometimes on iOS 5, when a message popped up (such as from a launcher notification), you couldn’t make it go away.
  • Long Book or Chapter Display (iPad). When trying to select from books with more than 30 chapters, or from chapters with more than 30 verses, the iPad wasn’t correctly displaying all of them.
  • Main Reader View Distorted (iPhone). When you received a call or if you used your iPhone as a Wi-Fi hotspot, the notification slide-in was compressing the main Bible Reader view.

Get Your Update Now:

If you already have the Bible App installed:

  1. On your Apple device, tap the App Store icon.
  2. When the App Store opens, tap the Updates icon.
  3. Tap Update for the Bible App.
    OR
    Tap Update All.

If this is your first time installing the Bible App:

  1. On your Apple device, tap the App Store icon.
  2. When the App Store opens, tap the Search icon.
  3. Search for “Bible”.
  4. Tap the Bible App from LifeChurch.tv.
  5. Tap the FREE button.

Recap: Nov 30 YouVersion Webcast

It was so exciting to get together with thousands of our closest friends during our live webcast yesterday! We don’t take for granted all that God has done through YouVersion—and especially what He has done through you, the worldwide YouVersion community. It was a rare treat having the opportunity to address your great questions from #YouVersion on Twitter. (Sorry we couldn’t get to every one!) Thanks to your participation, #YouVersion even became a trending topic worldwide on Twitter!

If you missed joining with us live, we’ve put together a list of some of the high points for you, along with the complete event video:

Key YouVersion Links:

A Quick Review

Installs. In November of 2010, the Bible App™ was installed on 10 million unique devices. As of today’s webcast, it’s now been installed on more than 34 million. That represents 2 million installs… per month.

Bible Languages. We want to make the Bible freely available to as many people as possible, no matter where they live or what language they prefer. In November 2010, we offered Bible translations in 22 different languages. As of today’s webcast, we now have Bible translations in 61 different languages.

Bible Versions. When YouVersion first launched in 2008, we offered just 12 versions of the Bible. A year ago, YouVersion had 48 different versions of the Bible for to you to choose from. As of today’s webcast, YouVersion now brings you 187 versions. And more are on the way. Within the next few weeks, we’ll pass the 200 mark.

Reading Plans. As of today’s webcast, 52 partners are graciously providing the YouVersion community with more than 200 different reading plans, in many different languages. By the end of 2011, we expect to increase that number to 220.

Volunteers. Everything we do is accelerated through the passionate dedication of hundreds of volunteers, devoting themselves to serving the YouVersion community from literally all over the world. Our small team could never reach the numbers of people that we reach in partnership with you. If you’d like to see the many ways you can help, learn more at our brand-new volunteer website.

In a Minute. During the average minute: the Bible App is installed on 52 unique devices, 1,698 people open the Bible App to read the Bible, and people share 21 different passages on either Facebook or Twitter. And these are just a few examples. To help you really see how the Bible App serves the YouVersion community, we’ve prepared a comprehensive infographic that breaks down many of the different things that happen in the Bible App during just one minute.

Resources for Pastors and Churches. If you’d like to help the people in your church connect with the Bible more, we’ve created several tips, explanations, and tools you can use to help those in your circles better understand what the Bible App is, what it has to offer, and how easy it is to get.

Still to Come… We’re comprehensively updating YouVersion.com, working to make its feature set more consistent with what you’ve become accustomed to in the Bible App. If you have a free YouVersion account, we’d love for you to take a look at the beta version and let us know what you think. (Please understand: The beta is still very much a work in progress, and this is a limited-time offer. Don’t move all of your Bible engagement to this beta version!)

We never stop working on making the Bible App easier to use to connect with the Bible every day—more reading plans, more Bible versions, more devices, more robust tools, more of everything. Still, the most common request we hear is to make the Bible App easier to use as part of a group, so we’re adding community-oriented features to help you engage together. You should see an update to the Bible App for Android this week, and an update to the iPhone version soon. Both will allow you to view your friends’ profiles and connect more with your community.

Later we plan to add features that will allow you to set reminders to help you remember to get in your reading plan, and even to receive your reading plan selections through a daily email. As always, you’re in complete control of your YouVersion experience—you choose how you want to interact with the Bible App.

The Other 16. One in every 17 iOS devices (Apple iPhones, iPads, and iPod touches) already have the Bible App installed. And, one in 17 Android devices have also already installed the Bible App. That means that on each of these platforms, there are 16 people who still haven’t installed it on their device. But you can help! When you meet someone with a smart phone or mobile device, ask them if they have the Bible on it. And if they don’t, consider offering to help them install the Bible App. (Remember: It’s always completely free.) We’re working on a new tool that will give you an easy way to tell us about your 16. When you use it, we’ll send you a free t-shirt and some Bible App stickers.

What Can You Do?

  1. Engage. Is the Bible a part of your everyday life? If you haven’t already been using Reading Plans, consider signing up for your free YouVersion account and trying one. Reading Plans divide up the Bible into manageable portions, making them a great way you can establish—and keep!—a daily habit of spending time in God’s Word.
  2. Share. Share the Bible App and YouVersion with others. Help the other 16 find what you’ve already discovered for yourself!
  3. Join. The entire YouVersion community is powered by the passion of volunteers. Join us as together we pursue the vision of reaching the entire world with God’s Word. Even with the extraordinary volunteer community already partnering with YouVersion, it’s just not enough. We need literally thousands more. Please come and share your passion with us.
  4. Give Thanks. Look up your favorite Bible version in the Bible App. Go to any page of the Bible in the reader, scroll to the bottom, and look at the information about the organization who makes that version available. Please contact them to express your gratitude for their generosity—and perhaps even consider supporting their work financially. We couldn’t do what we do without them!

Volunteers Translate YouVersion into Dutch

When people first learn about the Bible App™ from YouVersion, many reasonably assume that we probably offer at least a few versions of the Bible. But what most probably don’t realize is that the Bible App will allow them to immediately access 160 versions… in 51 languages… entirely free. Most new users also probably don’t know that they can experience all of YouVersion—not just the website, but relevant blog posts, complete technical support, email communications, and the entire mobile version (the Bible App), including all its menus, buttons, and controls—in any of ten different languages. How do we do it? By partnering with you.

The YouVersion community is only possible because of our global network of extraordinary volunteers. People just like you passionately contribute their gifts and talents to ensure that others will also get to know the joy of engaging with God’s Word in their own heart languages. Generous Bible publishers partner with YouVersion too, providing both up-to-date, popular translations and deeply loved “classic” versions. And we’re honored to serve in God’s kingdom alongside all of you. Your hard work through partnerships like these have given YouVersion to the world in English, Norwegian, Spanish, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Russian, Korean, Brazilian Portuguese, and German, and now—in Dutch.

Partner Volunteers

Even with great design and engineering, if you couldn’t read the Bible App’s buttons and menus, how would you use it? Fortunately, because volunteers share our vision to make the Bible freely, easily accessible to as many people as possible, no matter what language they speak, many are willing to offer their abilities as translators. And because of their contributions, we’re now pleased to welcome Dutch users into the YouVersion family. Of course, we can always use more help. The Bible App and other YouVersion tools are constantly in development, as we strive to make them not only more useful, but easier to use. As just one example, Dutch speakers can now receive assistance and technical support entirely in Dutch, submitting their requests through email, Facebook, or Twitter. And volunteers are who make it happen.

If you can help with translation into Dutch or other languages, we’d love to hear from you. Serving other YouVersion users—all over the world—can literally change your life. But don’t just take our word for it. Read for yourself what some of our awesome Dutch language volunteers have to say about the reasons they serve:

Dutch Language Volunteer Joshua J.

“When the opportunity came to join in translating the YouVersion Bible App to Dutch, I jumped right in. A lot of Dutchmen are great with English, but it gives you a special feeling to use an application in your mother language. Through the work of Dutch volunteers, the Bible App can now be used as a full-fledged Bible in Dutch churches.”
—Joshua J., Amsterdam, Netherlands

 

Dutch Language Volunteer Annemarieke R.

“A couple of years ago, I bought an iPod touch and got the YouVersion App. When a call for translators got out, I volunteered because I have done translating before. And translating into Dutch is easy for me—I am Dutch born and bred, and I studied Dutch language and literature, even though I now live in the U.S. with my family. I also volunteered because there can be no better cause than proclaiming God’s Word in every language to all people, and modern technology provides the perfect means. May God bless all our efforts!”
—Annemarieke R., Grand Rapids, MI, USA

 

Dutch Language Volunteer Yanick G.

“I was using YouVersion for some time, but I thought it was a shame that some of the youth in my church couldn’t use it because of the language barrier. But instead of complaining about it and waiting for someone else to start working on it, I decided to roll up my sleeves and get to work myself. And that’s how I joined YouVersion’s Volunteer team. It’s been a crazy ride, but now that the project is well on its way, I feel blessed to be a part of such a great international team that made it possible for Dutch-speaking people to engage in the Bible—thanks to the help of YouVersion.”
—Yanick G., Ouderkerk aan de Amstel, Netherlands

Bible Publishing Partners

Of course, YouVersion is entirely centered around God’s inspired Word, the Bible. While volunteers partner with us to make things happen, our community also requires the generous support of Bible publishers and societies. In Dutch, while we already offer Het Boek (HTB) and Statenvertaling (SV1750), we’ve also been working hard to bring you additional modern, easy-to-read versions. Keep checking here on our blog for news about translations into Dutch, and watch the “Nederlands” space in the Bible App and on YouVersion.com’s versions page for new additions!

Worldwide, Dutch Readers, Speakers Now Enjoy All YouVersion Has to Offer

The Bible App™ and YouVersion.com Now in DutchIf you read or speak Dutch, the Bible App™ and the YouVersion.com website are excited to welcome you to the YouVersion family, no matter where you live in the world. While we currently offer Het Boek (HTB) and Statenvertaling (SV1750) both on the YouVersion versions page and inside the Bible App™ (look under “Nederlands”), we’re working to secure agreements to bring you additional excellent translations in Dutch in the near future.

YouVersion’s simple mission has always been to make the Bible freely available to as many people as possible, no matter where they live or what language they prefer. But Bibles in your heart language are just one small part of that vision. Just as important are all the many ways you use YouVersion’s tools and engage with its community—the entire user interface (buttons, menus, and controls), interactions on social networks (like Facebook and Twitter), email exchanges, reading plans—even full technical support! It’s a worldwide community of passionate volunteers who make it all possible, recently completing the massive undertaking of translating the entire YouVersion experience into easy-to-understand, everyday Dutch, now equally suited for any of the following:

Dutch Speakers “at Home” in the Netherlands. The World Factbook describes the Netherlands as the 60th most populous nation in the world, with 16.8 million people, 96% of whom claim Dutch as their mother tongue. In fact, according to Wikipedia, Dutch is a first language to some 23 million people—as well as a second language to another 5 million.

Dutch Speakers Around the Globe. The YouVersion community is constantly adding more Dutch speakers, with the Bible App installed on devices that list Dutch as their default language from literally all over the world. Besides the Netherlands, Dutch is also the native language of Belgium and Suriname, two neighbors which, together with the Netherlands, make up the three states of the Dutch Language Union. And as many as half a million more native speakers of Dutch are dispersed throughout the United States, Canada, and Australia. YouVersion truly comprises a global community, and Dutch speakers everywhere are important members of that family.

Now, for the first time, you can engage with God’s Word every day entirely in Dutch. Just imagine: no matter where you happen to be, the Bible is literally as close as your mobile device. And it’s always 100% free, with no hidden charges or in-app add-ons to pay for later. Simply download it and set your device’s default language to Dutch or, on some platforms, even specify Dutch directly within the Bible App!

If you speak or read Dutch, we’re excited to welcome you into our YouVersion family! Whether you already love the Bible or you’re just exploring it for the very first time, your language of choice shouldn’t be a barrier that makes it hard for you to enjoy. We’re looking forward to sharing in your journey and discoveries in God’s Word!

Get Bible App for Android Update Now: Improved Search, Bookmark Label View

Bookmarks Screen in the Bible App™ for Android v. 3.6Get the most out of the Bible App for Android. Release 3.6* is available for download in the Android App Market right now. In this update, we’ve added two great new features you’ll want to check out:

Improved Bible Search. For the first time on Android, now you can filter your Bible searches, limiting them to just the Old Testament, the New Testament, the Apocrypha, or to a single book. You can even sort your results to help you more easily find what you’re looking for (displaying them in book order, for example).

Label View. Bookmarks were always great for marking verses you want to quickly jump back to later, and labels made them even more useful. Now label view makes this feature handier than ever. You can see all your labels in one place, then tap a label to see which verses you applied it to. This great tool will help you organize your bookmarked verses for Bible studies, memory lists, or even sharing to encourage others. Check out the Android section of YouVersion’s Technical Support website to learn how to add your own labels.

Please share! It’s easy to start a conversation about the Bible App with your friends. Just tell them what you’re studying in the Bible right now. And if they have an Android device, maybe they’ll let you show them how it works—or even let you help them install it on their mobile. However you decide to use the Bible App, please come and tell us about it on Facebook and Twitter.


*This release supports Android version 1.6 and higher, as well as App2SD.

New Release of Bible App for BlackBerry Faster, with Better Connectivity

The Bible App™ Settings Screen on BlackBerry BoldThe latest release of the Bible App™ for BlackBerry is available now in BlackBerry App World or for direct download to your device. In this major update, version 3.6, besides noticeably quicker overall performance, we’ve also made significant tweaks to help you make the most of your particular network conditions. Here’s what you’ll find under the hood:

  • Faster Performance. The Bible App now responds much more quickly, especially for the features that most of you use most—like Notes, Bookmarks, and reading plans.
     
  • Reading Plan Caching. If you often find yourself with a slow or weak network connection, then sometime when you notice you happen to have a strong signal, you can jump into the Bible App and flip ahead through the next few days of your reading plan. Each day that you view will be stored (cached) into your device’s memory. As long as you don’t completely exit the Bible App (which you can set in the Options on your Home screen), then when you come back later, those days will still be there, and that dreaded “No network available” message won’t interrupt your daily reading.
     
  • Active Network Scanning. The Bible App now constantly monitors your network connection, adjusting settings in the background to try to maintain your signal. It also logs what it determines are its optimal settings, so that in the event your signal is completely lost, it can help you get reconnected as quickly as possible.
     
  • Customizable Network Settings. For the first time ever, from right inside the Bible App, you can actually manually tweak your connection settings (shown). This new feature will let you experiment to find the strongest signal possible, or to disconnect on demand to avoid unnecessary data charges.
     

If you have a BlackBerry, then you know that for all their terrific functionality and usefulness, sometimes these devices can present unique challenges. We continue working diligently to keep bringing you the best Bible experience possible on your BlackBerry.

If you have friends with BlackBerry devices, please consider telling them about the Bible App—perhaps even helping them install it. As always, all they’ll need to take full advantage of its best-in-class features—reading plans, Notes, Bookmarks, and so much more—is a free YouVersion account. And please come connect with us on Facebook and Twitter to let us know how you’re using the Bible App!

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