Partners and Volunteers Bring Swedish Bibles and Interface to YouVersion

Bibeln App-ikonen på svenskaPeople ask us all the time for new versions of the Bible in different languages. Certainly we’re convinced that the best, most natural way to engage with God’s Word is in your own heart language. And with 209 versions in 75 languages already, it might seem like we’d easily be able to add even more. But the truth is, we absolutely couldn’t do what we do without the generous partnership of our Bible society partners.

Here’s another request we hear all the time: “When will YouVersion be available in my language?” It’s a huge effort to translate all of YouVersion’s menus, interfaces, blog posts, technical support, and more into new languages. This task only happens through the tireless devotion of a passionate, worldwide community of volunteers—people just like you—offering their talents in translation to bring the Bible App™ to you in your own language. Thanks to them, we’ve already seen YouVersion translated from English into Norwegian, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Russian, Korean, Brazilian Portuguese, German, Dutch, French—and of course now into Swedish! We sincerely cannot thank these amazing people enough for all that they do for the YouVersion community.

Bible Publishing Partners

Together with generous Bible Publishers, we’re pleased to present the YouVersion community with accurate, easy-to-read Swedish translations of the Bible:

Swedish, Translation 2000 (SB00-SV). After almost 30 years of work, the “Bibeln 2000” is the result of a broad, interdisciplinary project completed in 2000. A Bible Commission appointed a team of theologians, archaeologists, linguists, historians, specialists in Hebrew language and culture, and many other professionals, tasking them to work together to translate the Bible into contemporary, clear Swedish language. Using modern Biblical research and methods, they sought to retain meaning and original context from the source texts. Graciously provided by the Swedish Bible Society.

Svenska Folkbibeln (SFB). In 1983, the Swedish People’s Bible Foundation set out not only to translate the oldest source texts available as literally as possible, but also to develop from them a version of the Bible that would be easily readable by a modern Swedish audience. Members of the foundation wanted their translation to reflect “God’s presence” and His “direct intervention into human history.” The Svenska Folkbibeln (the “People’s Bible”) was completed in 1998.

Besides these two great Bibles, you’ll also find the Nya Levande Bibeln (BSV), provided by the International Bible Society (now Biblica). And YouVersion even offers more “classic” Bible versions available in the public domain: the Svenska 1917 (SVEN) and the Karl XII 1873 (SK73).

Volunteers

Swedish translations of the Bible are just one piece of all YouVersion has to offer. The Bible App allows you to easily navigate, read, listen, share, annotate, and engage with God’s Word, no matter where you are. But even the best tools would be useless if you couldn’t read them. That’s where volunteers come in. People passionate about sharing God’s Word offer their gifts in translation to bring these tools to Swedish users. Besides constantly improving the Bible App, we’re also now offering technical support in Swedish, so there’s always more translation to be done. And we really need more help for our awesome Swedish-speaking volunteer community. If you can help with Swedish translation—even by responding to requests on Facebook and Twitterplease join us!

We asked some of our key Swedish language volunteers, “What’s it like to work with the YouVersion community all over the world?” Here’s what they had to say:

YouVersion Svenska språket volontär Petter J.

“When I’d used YouVersion for a couple months, a call for volunteers was made. I immediately saw the need for the Bible App in Swedish and joined at once. I never could have imagined how much fun it is to work side by side with so many nationalities. Being part of a bigger picture gives a whole new meaning. And to think that I get to be a part of getting the Word to even more people!”
—Petter J., Ängelholm, Sweden

YouVersion Svenska språket volontär Magnus O.

“A few months ago, I heard about YouVersion in my Bible study group. I read about it and discovered that it relies on volunteer work. As I previously worked with a translation project, it felt both fun and right to try to contribute to making the Word of God even more accessible in Sweden.”
—Magnus Ö., Gothenburg, Sweden

Experience All YouVersion Has to Offer—Now in Swedish

Bibeln App genom YouVersion nu tillgänglig på svenska

You can now participate in the YouVersion community in Swedish. More than simply Swedish translations of the Bible, you can set the interface in the Bible App™ to display in Swedish—even receive technical support and other communication from YouVersion in Swedish! Come and explore all that YouVersion has to offer—in Swedish!

Our Swedish launch represents the twelfth translation of YouVersion’s tools and resources into another language. We began in English, but we’ve been honored to be able to add Norwegian, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Russian, Korean, Brazilian Portuguese, German, Dutch, and most recently, French. Today we’re officially welcoming Swedish speakers and readers to participate in the YouVersion experience in their own language:

Swedish Interface (Menus, Buttons and Controls). There’s only one reason we’re able to offer so many different translations of YouVersion’s tools: because of the tireless efforts of passionate YouVersion volunteers. These extraordinary people have graciously offered their gifts in translation to bring Swedish to the YouVersion interface for your iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch), Android, BlackBerry, or Java device. Simply set the default language for your device to Swedish. Or, if you have the latest update of the Bible App for iOS or Android, you can even select Swedish directly in your Bible App Settings.

Swedish Emails and Blog Posts. On the English version of our blog, try selecting Svenska from the list of languages at the top right. You can also navigate directly to the Swedish version. There you’ll find blog posts in Swedish, on topics that relate to your YouVersion experience. And if you’d like to receive updates and other YouVersion communication in Swedish, simply sign up for a free YouVersion account, then visit Settings at YouVersion.com and set your preferred language to Svenska.

Support in Swedish. Visit the Swedish version of our Technical Support site for answers to all your questions about YouVersion.com or the Bible App. And if you can’t find what you need there, simply contact us in Swedish—and Swedish-speaking YouVersion support volunteers will be happy to respond to you.

Since we first launched the Bible App, YouVersion’s simple mission has always been the same: to make the Bible freely available to as many people as possible, no matter where they live or what language they prefer. Now, we’re thrilled to be able to bring the entire YouVersion experience to Swedish speakers everywhere for the first time. Swedish was a natural choice for the next language of YouVersion, for a couple of important reasons:

Swedish Speakers. According to The World Factbook, Sweden is the 90th most populous nation in the world, with more than 9 million people. And not only is Swedish the official first language of Sweden, according to Wikipedia, it’s also currently the most-spoken North Germanic language, with more than 10 million speakers around the world.

Swedish Connectivity. In the case of many other languages, the number of speakers doesn’t necessarily correlate to potential YouVersion users, but Swedish is special. Sweden consistently ranks as one of the most information-connected nations in the world, and fourth worldwide among smart phone users, with 52% of its population possessing these mobile devices. This means that a much greater percentage of Swedish speakers can immediately benefit from having YouVersion in Swedish.

Welcome to YouVersion! We’re so excited to invite Swedish speakers and readers into the global YouVersion community. While we’ll be sharing more on our blog about the Swedish launch in a few days, in the meantime, we’d love for you to start connecting with other YouVersion members on Facebook and Twitter. And if you have friends whose preferred language is Swedish, please share this great news with them!

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?

YouVersion’s Top 10 Bookmarked Verses of 2011

YouVersion’s Top 10 Bookmarks of 20112011 was a big year for Bible engagement in the YouVersion community. One of the ways we did that was by creating tens of millions of bookmarks. A bookmark is a great way to keep track of a verse you want to return to again and again, whether it’s because you want to memorize it, you want to share it with a friend, or simply because it’s one of your favorites. Here are the top 10 bookmarks that the YouVersion community saved during 2011*:

  1. Philippians 4:6123,035
  2. Jeremiah 29:11100,044
  3. Proverbs 3:597,758
  4. Romans 12:295,804
  5. Philippians 4:1387,120
  6. Philippians 4:783,193
  7. Romans 8:2878,491
  8. Proverbs 3:674,770
  9. Matthew 6:3373,544
  10. 1 Corinthians 13:471,923

Saving a bookmark is easy!

To learn how:

  • Visit our Support site.
  • Select your language at the bottom.
  • Select your device type at the left.
  • Look under “Notes, Bookmarks & Highlights.”

*Although YouVersion also tracks which version of the Bible you’re viewing when you save a bookmark, this list is just the top 10 bookmarks, regardless of version. The versions we link to here are simply to give you a sense of the variety that’s possible in how you connect with God’s Word using the Bible App. YouVersion presently offers more than 200 different translations of the Bible, in 75 languages.

YouVersion Community Shatters Christmas Day Records

What’s a great way to celebrate the birth of our Savior? According to the worldwide YouVersion community, the answer for Christmas Day 2011 was, “Share the Bible!” Together we gave away more free Bibles and helped more people connect to God’s Word through free YouVersion accounts than on any other single day in YouVersion’s history.

The November webcast was the first time we mentioned The Other 16 — that 16 out of 17 iOS and Android devices hadn’t installed the Bible App. Then together we shared the Bible on Christmas Day, telling others our favorite things about God’s Word, even helping friends and family install the Bible App™ on their devices. And the results are in:

 

December 24:

December 25:

  • Android shattered its record—set just the day before—with 130,605 new installs.
  • The Bible App for iPad set a record of 43,000 new installs, more than doubling its previous record of 20,000 (set on Christmas Day 2010).
  • Overall, the Bible App was installed on 300,877 new mobile devices, breaking its previous one-day record of approximately 165,000 (also set on Christmas Day 2010).
  • Users created 53,000 brand-new free YouVersion accounts, besting the previous record of 37,000 accounts in a single day (back in October, when we made the offline NIV available for download).
  • The Bible App for iPhone nearly reached its previous record (114,000), within just 3,000 installs.

December 24–29:

  • It took just 5 and a half days for the Bible App to be installed on 1 million new devices. (During this same Share the Bible period in 2010, it took us 11 days to reach 1 million.) By the end of December 28, we were already at 940,000, accumulating our next 60,000 in the first half of December 29—almost exactly half the time it took to reach a million during that same period in 2010.

Many apps for mobile devices won’t see 300,000 installs total — let alone on a single day. But because of you, more and more people are discovering God’s Word, joining with us in a revolution of Bible engagement. Thank you for your part in making Global Share the Bible Day such a record-breaking success!

 

YouVersion Community Milestone: 1 Million Reading Plans Completed

YouVersion Community Completes 1 Million Reading Plans

“Better is the end of a thing than its beginning…”
Ecclesiastes 7:8b

Nothing compares with completing something truly worthwhile. And one million times since we first introduced Reading Plans, many of you have experienced that exact feeling, as together, the YouVersion community completed more than one million Reading Plans.

If you haven’t already discovered how much Reading Plans can revolutionize the time you spend in God’s Word, what are you waiting for? No more excuses in 2012! You now have more than 220 unique Reading Plans just waiting for you to explore in the Bible App and at YouVersion.com—in more than 10 languages! (With many more new plans still to come.)

Consider committing to at least one of the following popular Reading Plans to help you—once and for all—establish that Bible-reading habit you’ve been promising yourself:

Experiencing God’s Renewal. God’s Word has a lot to say about the ways He renews our hearts, minds, and body—and even our purpose. Besides a passage from the Bible, each day also includes a brief devotional to help you experience God’s renewal in your life.
Publisher: LifeChurch.tv. 5 days

The Essential 100. Using a survey approach, the Essential 100 helps you see the big picture of God’s Word as you read through 50 Old Testament passages and 50 New Testament passages. Reading The Essential 100 will help you form a daily Bible-reading habit as it takes you “through the Bible.”
Publisher: Scripture Union. 100 days

The One-Year ® Bible. In as little as 15 minutes a day, you can discover insights and fulfillment as you read through the entire Bible. Experience for yourself why Tyndale’s “The One Year ® Bible” is the world’s most popular annual reading Bible. Each day’s reading contains select passages from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms, and Proverbs.
Publisher: Tyndale Publishing. 365 days

Are you listening? Do you have ears to hear what the Spirit of the Lord is saying? Give God the opportunity to speak into your life every day, whether it’s through reading or listening to His Word. We can’t wait to see what God will do in your life in 2012 as you commit to giving Him just a portion of each day!

Today Is Global Share the Bible Day!

Merry Christmas! Please join us today as together we not only celebrate the birth of our Savior, but also share the joy of the gift of His Word. YouVersion is what it is because of you, the worldwide YouVersion community. God has already used your passion and the Bible App™ to reach more people than we ever could have imagined. Even so, we believe it’s still just the beginning.

Last year we started the annual tradition of Global Share the Bible Day, a day when we take every opportunity to share the Bible with others. Whether it’s face to face, through your Facebook status or your Twitter feed, or even on your blog, every time you think of it today, please tell others what you love about the Bible.

What to Share? Here Are Some Ideas:

Share the Bible Day. Let others know what the YouVersion community is doing:

Your faith. What has God done in your life?

Your favorite verse. Why? What does it mean to you?

The Christmas story. What’s your favorite part?

The Bible App. Tell people how they can get the Bible for free.

These are just a few suggestions to help get you started. But of course Global Share the Bible Day is about how the Bible is special to you. The Bible App makes it easy: Visit our Technical Support website to learn you can how to link your free YouVersion account to your Facebook and Twitter. Just select your preferred language at the bottom, your device type on the left, and then look under “Sharing.” (And when you share online, please remember to include the hash tag #Bible.)

We’re excited to get to spend Christmas Day with you, drawing as much attention as we can today to God’s story of love for us—the Bible!

YouVersion Partners Contribute French Bibles, Volunteers Translate

Française Bible App™ IcôneHaving the opportunity to engage with God’s Word in your own heart language is one of the most powerful ways you can experience it. YouVersion would never be able to practically translate the Bible into all of the many languages people ask us to. We’re fortunate to be able to partner with Bible publishers and societies from around the world, organizations who graciously join with us to make their translations of the Bible freely available to our YouVersion community.

As you might imagine, translating the many different pieces of the global YouVersion experience—interfaces, menus, websites, blogs, tech support, and more—is a huge undertaking. That’s why we thank God every day for our passionate community of extraordinary volunteers. Thanks to them, we’ve already seen YouVersion translated from English into Norwegian, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Russian, Korean, Brazilian Portuguese, German, Dutch—and of course now into French! We couldn’t do what we do without the help of these amazing people.

Bible Societies

Generous partners have provided the YouVersion community with several beautiful translations of the Scriptures into French, with more still to come:

  • Bible Segond 21 (S21). Offered by the Geneva Bible Society, the Segond 21 required 12 years of translation from original Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek texts, while also incorporating more recently available research. Billed as “the original with the words of today,” it’s been a top-selling Bible among French speakers—even making an appearance in the top 200 books sold at Amazon France!
  • La Bible Du Semeur (BDS). Provided by the International Bible Society (now Biblica), La Bible Du Semeur was translated from the original Biblical languages using a thought-for-thought, meaning-based philosophy. Completed in 1999, the BDS presents the Scriptures in contemporary, easy-to-read informal French.
  • …And 3 More Brand New Additions. We’re excited to announce that thanks to the Alliance Biblique Française, we have just been able to release for the first time on YouVersion the Français Courant 1997 (FRC97-FR), Nouvelle Bible Segond 2002 (NBS-FR), and Parole de Vie 2011 (PDV-FR). Each of these are well-known, widely read translations among French speakers. Keep checking under Français on the Bible App’s list of available translations and on YouVersion.com’s Versions page!

The Geneva Bible Society Bible also provides the Nouvelle Edition de Genève 1979 (NEG79). In addition to all these contemporary translations from publishing partners, YouVersion also offers more “classic” versions from the public domain, including the Martin 1744 (FMAR), the Bible Louis Segond 1910 (LSG-FR), and the Ostervald (OST).

Volunteers

Wonderful French translations are critical to helping French readers and speakers engage with the Bible, but that’s just one part of YouVersion. Bible App users also need to be able to read its controls, buttons, and menus. People passionate about sharing God’s Word, gifted in translation, volunteer to make all of these tools just as accessible for French users. We never stop making the Bible App better, so there’s always translation to do. And now that we’re offering technical support in French for requests which come to us through email, there’s even more to do. We deeply appreciate our French-speaking volunteer community, so we’d love to get more help for them. If you can assist with any French translation—particularly in responding to requests on Facebook or Twitterplease join us. We need you!

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to help YouVersion reach the world, we asked a few of our awesome French language volunteers to share their experiences with you:

Bénévoles Traduction française Ramelle S.

“I was involved in translation at church and in other areas, when I received YouVersion’s email requesting volunteers. I saw the opportunity to sow in a ministry that was helping me so much through the Bible App, so I jumped straight in! Volunteering with YouVersion has connected me to Christians from different parts of the globe, interacting, working, and learning together while having the opportunity to bless people we don’t even know. This is an awesome privilege!”
—Ramelle S., Villeneuve-Saint-Georges, France

Bénévoles Traduction française Vanessa R.

“I stumbled upon YouVersion while searching for a Bible App. I fell in love with how simple it was to connect with God’s Word on a daily basis. Then I noticed an invitation to become a volunteer. How thrilled I was to see that I could be part of the translating team, and use this ability with language to help people just like me engage with God! This opportunity is truly a rewarding and blessed experience.”
—Vanessa R., Montreal, Canada

Bénévoles Traduction française Maria-Rosa C.

“I began volunteering for YouVersion a few months ago under the prompting of the Holy Spirit. This ministry is so fulfilling because I know it is impacting many people all around the world.”
—Maria-Rosa C., South Jordan, Utah, USA

Bénévoles Traduction française Vera S.

“The Bible App has been very strategic in my walk with Christ. I am able to tap into Reading Plans and just rest in God’s grace as I read His Word. It was important to me that I share with others by volunteering my time, skills, and talents. It is humbling to know that I am part of a team that comes together to help others out of love and obedience to the Lord. Each day in the Lord is a journey in service—serving God and others. Volunteering at YouVersion is a daily reminder to me of that.”
—Vera S., Jackson, Mississippi, USA

The Bible App #33 Most-Downloaded iTunes App in 2011

Every December, Apple announces the top apps in each category in the iTunes Store for the entire year. For 2011, in the free Reference category, the Bible App™ from YouVersion was #33 on iPhone and #100 on iPad! Just to offer a little perspective, Apple recently announced that it’s seen more than 18 billion downloads go through the Apple App Store. And there are currently more than 520,000 different apps there.
iTunes App Store Rewind 2011 and the Bible App™
If you don’t already have the Bible App on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, why don’t you give it a try? (It’s always 100% free.) And if you do already have the Bible App—especially if you haven’t found The Other 16 yet—you might consider bringing up Apple’s Rewind 2011 as a way to share about it. Mentioning that the Bible App was one of the best apps of the year is a great conversation starter!

If you’d like to see all of the top apps mentioned in Rewind, just visit the iTunes Store and click the Rewind 2011 button scrolling through the top menu:
iTunes Rewind 2011 Button

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.