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The Bible App Has a New Look

When the Bible App debuted in Apple’s App Store in 2008, the mobile landscape looked a lot different. YouVersion’s Bible App was one of only 200 free apps in that first store, offering Bibles in just two languages and a single Reading Plan. The worldwide YouVersion community has come a long way since then.

Now the Bible App has been installed on more than 170 million unique iOS, Android, and Kindle devices (among others). Today’s Bible App offers more than 1000 Bible versions, in over 750 languages. And with hundreds of Bible Plans (and more being added all the time), the Bible App truly makes it easier than ever to connect with God’s Word anytime, anywhere.

Of all the changes we’ve introduced over the years, one of the Bible App’s most recognizable features — our icon — has only changed once, when we gave it a facelift in 2011. It’s time. Today we announce our cleanest, highest definition, easiest-to-read icon yet:

New App Icon

During these past seven years, God has already done more amazing things than we could ask, think, or even imagine. Best of all: we’re only getting started.

Interviews show top football players love the Bible App

Sunday, February 1, will be the the biggest day of the year in American sports. And although the top two teams in American football will face off as rivals on the field, several players from both sides share a love for the Bible. Thanks to YouVersion partner The Increase, hear some of the greatest players in American football tell why they love the Bible App:


 

 

And here’s a bonus video, captured by our friends at 1615.tv at Media Day talking with players from the Patriots and Seahawks about their love for the Bible:


 

Spread the Word.

Just like you, they love being able to read God’s Word anytime, anywhere with the Bible App. Whether it’s sharing the Verse of the Day, adding Bookmarks, or listening to audio Bibles, we’re all part of the same global community of people seeking God through His Word.

 

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Take it Further

Now is a great time to take a look at this special Bible Plan from The Increase. In this 3-week devotional, professional athletes from the NFL and MLB share the Bible passages that mean the most to them — and the stories behind them.

Start Plan

7 Ways to Feed Your Bible Habit

During each of the first 7 days of YouVersion’s 21-Day New Year Challenge, we’ll reveal a new tip: one more simple way you can use the Bible App to connect with God’s Word. And we’ll add a new tip every day, so keep checking back to see the next one.

Browse Bible Plans

Tip 1. Start a Bible Plan

Plans are a simple way to read the Bible every day, just a little at a time. Whether you’re looking for inspiration, direction, or a fresh perspective, the Bible App has Plans that meet you where you are. Start small. You’re more likely to complete a shorter Plan than a long one, especially when you’re just beginning. Then, as soon as you finish the Plan you’re on, find your next one and tap start.

Find a plan





Find Friends

Tip 2. Enjoy the Bible with Friends

The Bible is better with friends. Sharing, discussing, and exploring the things that God’s Word is saying to each of you — in a community of people you trust — helps you apply the Scriptures in your everyday life. The Bible App makes it easy for you to center conversations with Friends around the Bible.

Find Friends now





Watch the Bible

Tip 3. Watch the Bible with Videos

Featured Bible App video content helps you connect visually with the concepts and stories in the Bible. Enjoy compelling video from The Lumo Project’s just-released “The Gospel of John” film, clips from groundbreaking television series The Bible, and selections from Jesus Film Media’s JESUS, the movie about Jesus’ life that’s been seen more than 6 billion times, all over the world.

Watch Bible videos





Listen to the Bible

Tip 4. Listen to Audio Bibles

Did you know the Bible App can read to you? It can! Listen while you drive, work, exercise — or even read along. In the versions list, speaker icons indicate which Bibles offer audio. The Bible App even offers Audio versions in several different languages.

Note: Audio Bibles use streaming, so be aware of the data usage plan for your provider. For best audio results, we recommend connecting over WiFi.

Listen to the Bible





Bible Plan Reminder

Tip 5. Set a Bible Plan Reminder

Have the Bible App remind you what time you’re planning to read. In your Plan’s settings, tap Reminder to turn it on, then specify when you’d like to be reminded.

Set a Plan reminder





Create Highlights, Bookmarks, or Notes

Tip 6. Highlight, Bookmark, & Create Notes

In the Reader inside the Bible App, tap on any verse, and tools pop up to Highlight, Bookmark, write Notes, and more. Just tap the one you want and follow the prompts. You can specify colors and labels, and with Notes, whether you want them Public or Private. Try it!

Mark a passage





Subscribe to the Verse of the Day

Tip 7. Subscribe to Verse of the Day

Let the Bible App bring God’s Word to you every day. Just specify whether you’d prefer email or push notification, which Bible version you prefer, and what time.

Subscribe to VOTD





YouVersion community passes monumental milestone . . .

20 Million Completed Bible Plans

Plans make your daily Bible reading easy and convenient.

We hear it from the YouVersion community all the time: Bible Plans have radically improved your consistency in connecting with God’s Word every day. But at 20 million completions, we’re only getting started. We add terrific new Plans all the time, along with new features designed to help you find the best Plans for your needs:

See what’s new, and what’s classic.
A convenient addition to your Bible App Home screen now shows our currently featured Plans. While many of the Plans we spotlight are new, we also love sharing popular favorites that you might enjoy. Anytime you spot a Plan that intrigues you, just tap it to learn more.

Discover your next favorite.
Many of our newer Bible Plans now feature high-resolution images that make browsing for your next Plan a pleasure. And with hundreds of Bible Plans to choose from, images can help you find what you’re looking for faster.

Find inspiration from your Friends.
Every Bible Plan has its own page, one stop telling what it covers, how many days it lasts, and more — like which of your Friends are currently subscribed to a plan, which Friends have completed it, and how many people overall in the YouVersion community have completed it. Seeing which Plans your Friends are enjoying is a great way to find Plans you might also like.

It’s all in your latest update.

If you have your device set to update your apps automatically, all of these great new features are already waiting for you inside the Bible App. But if not, simply update your Bible App to the latest version.

Find your next Bible Plan

Top 5 Questions About Bible App Friends

The latest version of the Bible App is designed specifically to help you explore God’s Word together with your most trusted friends. When you use the Bible App’s community features, you’re strengthening your relationships, putting the Bible at the center of your friendships… and drawing closer to God.

Friends settings inside the Bible App

We’ve answered the questions we’re hearing to help you decide how you want to bring Friends into your Bible experience:

1. What happens if I decline a Friend request?

When you tap Decline for a Friend request, that specific request is simply removed. The requester does not receive a notification that you declined. However, once the Bible App has removed that request, that also means that the requester can send you another Friend request in the future if they choose to.

2. Can I “Unfriend” someone?

Yes. Friendships are mutual. You always control who shares your Bible App experience with you.

  • Tap the main menu button. The main menu displays.
  • Tap Friends. Your current Friends list displays.
  • Tap the user you would like to Unfriend.
  • Tap Friend. The Bible App asks if you’re sure you wish to Unfriend this user.
  • Tap Unfriend. You no longer have a Friend connection with this user in the Bible App. (The requester does not receive a notification that you declined.)
    Note: This means that this user may request Friendship with you again—and also that you may request Friendship with them again, if you change your mind later.

3. How many Friends can I have in the Bible App?

Up to 150. Studies suggest most people only have the capacity to maintain about that many significant relationships. Limiting your Friends to people you know well makes the Bible App an environment for honest conversations and shared discoveries centered around Scripture.

4. Will my Friends be able to see all my Bible App activity?

By default, yes. But you can customize most Bible App activities as you go, choosing who can see what.

  • Likes and Comments. You can Like and Comment on Friends’ activities, as well as on your own. Your Likes and Comments show up in your Friends’ feeds, as well as underneath the activity you Liked or Commented on. To un-Like something, simply tap the heart again. To delete one of your Comments:
    • iOS: Swipe left across your Comment, then Delete.
    • Android: Long press on your Comment, then Delete.
    • Web: Click the “x” on the right side of your Comment.
  • Highlights. Your Highlights display in your Friends’ feeds as you create them. To change or remove one of your Highlights: Go to main menu > Highlights. Find the Highlight you want to change, tap the settings icon, and select what you want.
  • Bookmarks. When you Bookmark a passage, your Friends’ feeds show what you Bookmarked, but does not show the Bookmark Title or Labels. To change or remove one of your Bookmarks: Go to main menu > Bookmarks. Find the Bookmark you want to change, tap the settings icon, and select what you want.
  • Bible Plans. When you start a Plan, the Bible App asks if you want your Friends to see your Plan activity. If you say No, that Plan is tagged as Private, and none of your Plan activity will display in your Friends’ feeds. If you say Yes, then your Friends’ feeds will show that you started that Plan. They’ll also see each time you complete a day of the Plan, and when you finish the Plan. To change these settings at any time, simply go to the Plan’s settings, scroll to the Privacy section, and select Private or Friends Only.
  • Notes. When you create a Note, you can set it as Public, Friends, Private, or Save as Draft. To change or remove one of your Notes: Go to main menu > Notes. Find the Note you want to change, tap the settings icon, and select what you want.

5. What do Friends bring to my Bible App experience?

  • Trust. You and each Friend agree to be connected, so you can shape your experience around the people you’re closest to. And if you’d like to make any adjustments along the way, you can add or Unfriend at any time.
  • Encouragement. See your Friends’ Bible Plan progress and encourage each other to stick with it. Share what you learn from a day’s reading, or simply which part of that day’s reading you liked best.
  • Conversation. Like and comment on each other’s Bookmarks, Highlights, Notes, and other activity. Discuss what you’re reading, ask questions, share insights, and pray for one another.
  • Growth. People from all over the world have been telling us that connecting with their Friends through the Bible App has helped grow their understanding of the Bible. And just as many say that sharing the Bible with their friends is drawing them closer together.

Want to Know More?

This series of blog posts can help you understand everything about the Bible App:

Why Bible App 5 is a Step Forward in Bible Engagement

Since the Bible App’s launch in July 2008, we’ve seen incredible changes in the landscape of Bible engagement. Many of the numbers we look at every day are now so big that, in some ways, it’s hard to get a handle on what they even mean. But one thing is for sure: a revolution is taking place. Millions and millions of people all over the world are making the Bible a part of their everyday lives, many of them for the first time. And our mission at YouVersion remains the same: to help people fully engage with the Bible.

Up until now, the Bible App was designed mostly around you as an individual—you reading or listening to your Bible, adding your personal notes and your insights. While many people have told us that this kind of personal experience has helped them grow closer to God through His Word, we think there’s still more we can do—a lot more. The all-new Bible App 5 transforms the way you experience Scripture…from “me” to “we.”

post launch 1

 

Historically, people were only able to experience the Bible in community. Before the printing press, very few people had personal copies of the Bible. But movable type changed everything. For the first time in history, anyone who could read could experience God’s Word with their very own printed Bible. In more recent times, audio Bibles in several languages invite even more people to enjoy God’s Word by listening—even if they can’t read.

Bible App 5 was designed from the ground up to bring the best of all these things together again. It draws the Scriptures back into community, without sacrificing personalized access. You can keep enjoying your own Bible, just as you always have. But now, for the first time, you can also easily experience it within the context of close, trusted friendships.

That’s why we are so excited about Bible App 5, the most radical update since the Bible App began. Inside, you’ll find all-new features that let you discuss and discover the Scriptures—not with just anyone, but with the people you choose, real friends that you know and trust. Bible App 5 was designed specifically to help you connect more with God’s Word than you ever have before…through your relationships.

The new Bible App 5

Update your app or download Bible App 5 for Android or iOS today.

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sirma.mobile.bible.android

App Store: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/bible/id282935706?mt=8

Videos Feature Comes to the Bible App

We’re excited to announce the launch of a brand-new feature in the Bible App: Videos! You can immediately start engaging with the Bible through this new feature on the latest version of the Bible App for iOS, Android, and at Bible.com.

Now you can use the Bible App to watch and share Bible video content, generously provided by YouVersion partners. You’ll find clips from the History channel miniseries The Bible, which made a big splash during it’s premiere last night. You will also find  The Lumo Project from Big Book Media and Toy Gun Productions, as well as JESUS, the Jesus Film Media movie about Jesus’ life that’s already been shown more than 6 billion times worldwide!

At YouVersion, we’re constantly looking for new ways to help you engage with God’s Word. We believe Videos will help people connect with the Bible by letting them visually experience stories and concepts from the Bible—even if reading isn’t your favorite thing. Sharing video clips will also present new opportunities for you to invite discussion about your faith. And all video content is linked directly to the passages that inspired it, so you can jump straight to the original source!

To check out the Bible App’s new Videos feature, first make sure you have the most recent version of the Bible App on your iOS (iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch) or Android device*. Then simply go to the Bible App’s main menu and select “Videos.”(Wi-Fi access recommended for the best experience.) You can even see the new Videos feature on Bible.com!

 

*The latest version of the Bible App for Android (4.2) is currently only available in the Google Play store. This version will make it’s way to Amazon and other Android markets around the world later this week.

Big Features, Updates Coming to the Bible App

Video is the newest addition to the Bible App, coming in the next release for iPhone/iPad, Android, and even at Bible.com!

“Videos” will be on the Bible App’s main menu, right alongside the tools you already love, like Reading Plans and Bookmarks. Watch high-quality clips from brand-new miniseries The Bible, the world-renowned JESUS movie, and The Lumo Project. Engage with God’s Word in new ways, as video brings Bible stories and concepts to life for you. And of course, sharing videos will also mean more opportunities to share your faith with others.

Another exciting update coming to the Bible App for iPhone in our next release: Full support for the iPhone 5’s larger display. Ever since the iPhone 5’s introduction, the YouVersion iOS community has been asking when the Bible App would support it. It’s here!

Please let your friends know about these exciting new Bible App features on Facebook and Twitter. And watch for release announcements, so you can be the first to get the new update as soon as it’s available for your device!

Updates at YouVersion.com Website Reflect Most Common User Requests

In 2012, we introduced the all-new YouVersion.com, re-imagining it with most of the same features you already loved from the mobile versions of the Bible App. But even then, we knew we wanted it to do more. As the YouVersion community began letting us know which features they wanted to see there, we were taking notes. Today, we’re pleased to announce the first batch of upgrades to YouVersion.com.

(By the way, did you know that you can get this same YouVersion Bible reading experience — along with all your notes and stored information — at Bible.com? Try it!)

Bible Plans in the Reader. While previous versions of YouVersion.com displayed your Plans in a separate Reading Plan view—with limited functionality—now it shows them in the main Bible Reader panel, with complete access to Bible text, highlights, sharing, and anything else you might need.

Enhanced Bible Reader Settings. Speaking of Bible Reader functionality, you have more options than ever for customizing your reading. Just click the gear icon at the top of the Bible Reader panel. You could already choose your font face and size. Now you can also show or hide Footnotes, Highlights, and Cross References. It’s easy!

Search as you type Book/Chapter. To switch books or chapters, click the current book name. Then just start typing whatever you’re looking for, and YouVersion.com immediately narrows your choices for you!

Search as you type Version. Just like book/chapter, when you click your current version, start typing the name, abbreviation, or language of any version you want, and your choices will begin to narrow. If you know the version you want to switch to, now you can get there with little or no scrolling.

Smarter search. Type a reference into Search—say, Ephesians 2—and Search takes you directly there.

Better linking. If you click on a link to a specific passage or type it into Search—let’s say, Romans 8:37-39—YouVersion.com jumps you straight to the first verse in that passage (rather than to the beginning of the chapter)…even selecting it for you!

Faster Parallel Load. Even in the first release of YouVersion.com, clicking the Parallel button at the top of the Bible Reader panel displayed two Bible versions side-by-side. We’ve tweaked this feature to make the primary version you’re studying load even faster.

Publisher Details. YouVersion can only offer hundreds of Bible versions—in dozens of languages—through the generous partnership of Bible publishers. Now it’s easier than ever to find out more about your favorite Bible versions. At the bottom of the Bible Reader panel, click “Learn More” to see links to publishers’ websites, other versions available from this same publisher, and copyright details.

Ask your friends to try out YouVersion and Bible.com. Always 100% free, it’s now better than ever. It’s our pleasure to keep improving your Bible reading experiences with YouVersion, no matter how you choose to connect!

Watch the World Read About the Birth of Jesus

The story of our Savior’s birth has been told and retold for thousands of years, but this year, for the first time, you’ll be able to see how many people are actually reading it.

The Christmas Story Tracker is a fun live map we created to watch the world read about the birth of Jesus. When someone uses the Bible App to read a verse about the Christmas story, the map lights a star on their country. A counter at the top right shows the total number of readings from the YouVersion community since December 1.

Christmas Tracker

 

Whether you’re reading a Christmas Bible Plan or just a verse about Jesus’ birth, you’ll light up a star on the map and add to the running tally. And it’s easy to get your friends in on the fun: look for the Facebook and Twitter icons.

What are you waiting for…go check out christmas.youversion.com!

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