categories: YouVersion
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December 9th, 2008

by Bobby Gruenewald

BlackBerry + Bible = Bible App for the BlackBerry

If you have a BlackBerry, you really should download the new (and significantly improved) YouVersion.com Bible App for the BlackBerry!  As many of you know, I have been a long-time BlackBerry user (I love the iPhone, but it’s not for me).  I’ve really been looking forward to this release, not just for me, but for the 16+ million BlackBerry users around the globe.

There are only a few free Bible applications for the BlackBerry and even fewer that provide access to several modern English translations.  The Bible App for the BlackBerry provides free access to the 30+ translations in many different languages that you can access through YouVersion.com.  Read more about this release or download the application right now.

Also, I continue to be amazed at the response to the Bible App for the iPhone.  We have seen more than 550,000 people install it on their iPhone/iPod, and that number continues to grow by thousands every day.  We are hearing stories of non-Bible readers who are engaging with Scripture for the very first time.  Countless others are more engaged than ever before because they now have quick and easy access to The Bible.

If you are feeling a little left out without an iPhone/iPod/BlackBerry…remember you can access YouVersion.com from any web-enabled mobile phone at http://m.youversion.com.

2009 will bring some significant enhancements to the entire YouVersion.com platform that will help connect even more people to God’s Word.  I’m looking forward to sharing more as it develops.

In the meantime, our team would love to hear your feedback about the new Bible App.

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categories: LifeChurch.tv, YouVersion
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October 7th, 2008

by Bobby Gruenewald

Bible App for the Blackberry

As a dedicated BlackBerry user (that’s right no iPhone), I’m particularly excited to share our Digerati team’s latest release with you. Bible App for the BlackBerry takes you directly to YouVersion Mobile, where you can:

  • Use the reader to study any part of Scripture—the entire Bible is at your fingertips.
  • Take your pick from 35 different translations available in 19 different languages.
  • Search the entire Bible for a word, phrase, or verse, and you’ll get your results in seconds.
  • The One-Year Reading Plan provides daily selections to keep you on track when you’re on the go.
  • Learn from others by checking out recent contribs.

We released YouVersion Mobile in April and the iPhone Bible App in July. Since then, more than 400,000 unique iPhone users have downloaded the Bible App and have spent more than 67 million minutes reading the Bible. Thanks for your encouragement and feedback along the way. We’re thrilled to see more people each day engage with Bible, whatever the medium.

You can download the Bible App for the Blackberry for free.  This version of the application is a humble beginning, but it should provide a quick and easy way for all of you BlackBerry users to access the Bible.

Are you a BlackBerry user? If so, I’d love to hear from you and also get your feedback on the Bible App.

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97 comments

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categories: YouVersion, working together
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September 3rd, 2008

by Bobby Gruenewald

This post is shorter than The Bible, but only a little

There have been so many updates to YouVersion.com in the past week that I will barely be able to contain them in this one post.  Since you all have been a big part of the community that made YouVersion.com possible, I wanted to be sure to bring you up to speed on the development.  It’s an unusually long post, so hang with me.

We are thrilled that The Bible is becoming more accessible, engaging more people, and creating more conversation about God’s Word than ever before.

As many of you know, we recently launched the Bible App for the iPhone/iPod Touch.  Since the launch in July, we have seen 287,000 people download and install the app on their iPhone/iPod.  More importantly, these users have spent more than 30 million minutes reading the Bible!  For the record, that completely blows away any of my initial expectations.  Yesterday, a significant new update (v1.2) was released for the Bible App that adds the following features and enhancements:

+ Localization: the application now is localized to English (en), Spanish (es), French (fr), German (de).
+ New translations: mentioned in detail below.
+ Book divisions: the books area is separated into key sections. 
+ Share:
you can now simply share a verse with a friend via email, and also notify a friend about the application.
+ Settings:
within the settings area, you can change your font size in the Bible reader, and adjust to a low light version for simple reading in a dark place.
+ Improved speed and performance and a new user interface.
+ We also made an OOPS and accidentally released a little code that doesn’t work yet, but reveals what is coming in the next release - the ability to access several of the translations when your iPhone or iPod touch is offline (the number one most requested feature).

Remember, even if you do not have an iPhone or iPod Touch, you can still easily access http://m.youversion.com from any web enabled phone (that includes the Blackberry).

Additionally, in the last week we have added many new translations in multiple languages to YouVersion.com.  You can now choose from one of 31 different Bible translations available in 16 different languages.  All of those translations can be accessed via your computer, mobile phone and via the Bible App.  Below is a comprehensive list of the translations that are currently available.

English:
- American Standard Version
- Amplified Bible
- Contemporary English Version
- English Standard Version
- Holman Christian Standard Bible
- King James Version
- New American Standard Bible
- New Century Version
- New International Version
- New King James Version
- Today’s New International Version
- The Message
- World English Bible

Spanish:
- La Biblia de las Americas
- Nueva Biblia de los Hispanos
- Reina-Valera Antigua

German:
- Elberfelder Bibel
- Luther Bible 1545

French:
- Louis Segond

Swedish:
- Svenska 1917

Chinese:
- Chinese Union Version Simplified
- Chinese Union Version Traditional

Bulgarian:
- Bulgarian 1940

Dutch:
- Statenvertaling

Finnish:
- Finnish 1938

Hungarian:
- Károli 1590

Indonesian:
- Terjemahan Baru

Norwegian:
- Det Norsk Bibelselskap 1930

Portuguese:
- Almeida Atualizada

Romanian:
- Romanian Cornilescu 1928

Russian:
- Бытие 1

I know that some of you have been patiently waiting on the NLT.  The good news is that we have worked out an agreement with Tyndale, but we have had some technical challenges on the implementation that we hope will be worked out very very soon.  Stay tuned.

NEED YOU: We could really use your help to continue to extend this Bible tool to more parts of the world.  We need people to help us localize (translate) the website, mobile site, and Bible App in to other languages.  The Bible App is currently localized in English, Spanish, French, and German and we hope to soon extend those languages to the YouVersion.com website too.  If you are fluent in multiple languages or know someone who is and would like to volunteer to help us translate several English words/phrases into Korean, Portuguese, Swedish, Norwegian, Japanese, Russian, Romanian, Dutch, Polish or Italian, please email me or leave a comment below.  Others of you can help us spread the word by contributing content, sharing it with your friends and social networks, linking to it from your blog/website, or using it as a tool to engage your church with Scripture.

Sorry about the long post…we are obviously excited about getting tons of people more engaged in The Bible.  For everyone from the cautious explorer to the passionate follower, the Bible is life changing.

If you have any questions about YouVersion, future features, additional translations, languages, suggestions, even complaints (not really)….we’d love to hear them.  Feel free to comment below.

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24 comments

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categories: personal, preaching
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June 10th, 2008

by Craig Groeschel

Trust The Story

Great communicators are generally great storytellers! Jesus may have been the greatest storyteller who ever lived.

My preaching mentor always reminded me, “People remember stories.”

Over the years, I have spent enormous amounts of time searching for stories and developing personal ones.

I will always use and value stories, but I am growing to trust more in The Story than in personal or second-hand stories.

As a preacher, you might put a little less faith in your cute, funny, or even powerful stories and more faith in the power of The Story found through God’s word!

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23 comments

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categories: I'm curious, YouVersion, books
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May 23rd, 2008

by Bobby Gruenewald

Results: Bible Translations

Thanks to everyone who commented on the previous post I wrote asking about Bible translations. I think we set a record number of comments!

Here are the results (as of early Friday afternoon)…The links will take you to that translation in YouVersion.com.

NIV - 27%
NLT - 26%
ESV - 18%
NASB - 10%
TNIV - 6%
NKJV - 5%
Message - 3%
NET, KJV, AMP, RSV, NRSV, HCSB - 1%

(We are working diligently on adding the NLT and others to the various YouVersion.com translations.)

What do you think? Any surprises?

For those of you in the US, have a good Memorial Day!

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28 comments

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categories: I'm curious, recommendations
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May 22nd, 2008

by Bobby Gruenewald

I’m Curious: Bible Translations

With all the various Bible translations out there, which translation do you use the most?

Please answer with where you are from, as well as your preferred translation.

We’ll post the results soon!

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245 comments

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categories: YouVersion
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April 29th, 2008

by Bobby Gruenewald

Free Mobile Bible

I mentioned in a previous post that the future is mobile

Now, you can now access the Bible via your mobile phone at http://m.youversion.com! If you have a web enabled mobile phone, you will be able to read and search The Bible in 14+ translations and much more. Here are some example screen shots on mobile phones (click to enlarge):

picture-11.png picture-12.pngpicture-13.png

Some of the key features include:

  • Quick Search including Book, Verse, Keywords/Text.
  • 14+ translations currently including: ASV, AMP, ESV, HCSB, NASB, NCV, NIV, NKJV, TNIV, MSG, WEB, LBLA (Spanish), NBLH (Spanish), RVA (Spanish).
  • Daily Reading (One Year Bible).
  • YouVersion.com User contributions attributed to scripture verses including text, links and YouTube mobile video.
  • List of the 20 most recent user contributions.

iphone-usercontrib.pngOh, I almost forgot…of course it works on the iPhone :)

Be sure to check it out using your mobile phone at http://m.youversion.com. Terry Storch, Brad, Andy and the rest of Team Digerati would love to hear any feedback you might have. I think they’ve done a great job with it!

Pastors/church leaders, this a great tool to promote to your church and through your blogs as it is a simple, free and very accessible way to get people engaged with Scripture!

Now, let’s help our Swerve readers and others who might find this post when looking for a mobile Bible by helping them find some great Scriptures.

What is one of your favorite verses in the Bible? One of mine is Galatians 2:20 (We’ll link them all up to YouVersion.com after you comment so people can dive right in)

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73 comments

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