There are so many things I want to write about when it comes to the awesome Bible app known as YouVersion. Before we talk about reading the different versions, or listening to the audios, or highlighting, sharing notes, making new friends in the community... before we talk about any of these great advantages, we must first get the app on your mobile device!
The first thing you need to know is that this is an app. It's understandable that for some this might sound confusing. After all most people think of The Bible as a book. I was talking to my good friend and waitress, Sonnie, this morning about YouVersion. (She read the first installment.) She asked me how to get YouVersion on her shiny, new Droid Incredible 2. Don't look for this Bible app in any bookstore!
Go to the app store for your device and type in "Bible." (The App Store is the "Market" in Android land.) Many different apps and versions will show up. The one you want is usually the one that is tops on the list. If you have any doubts, you want the one by LifeChurch.tv - these are the terrific folks who make this available for free!
From there follow the directions. (I know. Easy for me to say, right?) Most of the download process is a matter of signing up for an account and filling in the required blanks. (See UPDATE below.) Some of my more cynical readers, who have been raised with Milton Friedman's view that there's no such thing as a free lunch, may cry "Aha! - They just want my info so they can try to sell me stuff."
Not to worry. I've had my account for over a year and can tell you that the good folks at YouVersion are respectful of your info. They will only email you the things you sign up for - and you can always cancel any email notifications you set up. And everything from them is 100% FREE! (Sorry Milton.)
Still, you may wonder why you need to sign up for an account. Isn't this just about reading the Bible? Actually, you'll find out there's more available to you - which is one of the reasons this is such a great app and why you should run - not walk - to get this downloaded ASAP! Signing up for an account allows you to save your settings, notes, and bookmarks, to use reading plans, to earn badges and to engage in community with YouVersion friends. We'll get to all of that in later posts.
Here's your assignment for today. Download the YouVersion app to your device. Get your account started. Start exploring - there's lots of rooms off the main hall. Check them out. Open the doors. If you already have the YouVersion app on your mobile device, congratulations! Go to the head of the class. While you're there, find someone else who doesn't have YouVersion installed yet and help get them started.
Tomorrow - What's the deal with all the versions?
UPDATE: I was wrong when I wrote that most of the download process requires you to sign up for an account. This morning (9/20/11) my wife downloaded the app to her Android phone and did not need to sign up for an account. You can get access to the Bible reader and many other functions without signing up for a YouVersion account. However, in order to take full advantage of all the features - keeping your notes, highlights and connecting with other users - you will want to sign up for a free account. More on this coming up in future posts. - Mark
Have you missed any of the other YouVersion Review posts? Here are your quick links: