A new service was launched recently by Bible Society that aims to bring "divine inspiration direct to mobile phones."
VirtualBible will make the Old and New Testaments from Genesis to Revelation available for download to mobile phone users for the first time. Mobile phone users in more than 130 countries will be able to make use of the service in a choice of translations.
The product follows hard on the heels of products like Megavoice - a solar powered, hand-held computer dubbed the "God Pod" that plays a digitally recorded reading of the Bible.
"While mobiles are great for up-to-the-minute information, urgent messages, and football scores, we are offering people an opportunity to use the same technology for reflection," said Michael Pfundner, Bible Society's Development Officer. "Just two minutes of Bible reading, on a crowded train, can be really helpful on a busy day."
For church ministers in a counseling situation, bringing out a leather-bound book can appear scholarly and aloof, but "reading a Psalm from a Sony Ericsson is much less threatening," explained Pfundner.
The age of the "pew Bible" may be over too, as churches will no longer need to provide Bibles for visitors, stated a Bible Society news release.
"With the launch of this product, the Bible is no longer a dusty book on a shelf – it becomes part of a person's daily life and culture, as natural as their personalized ringtone or mp3s," said Pfundner.
"We expect demand for VirtualBible to come mainly, but not exclusively from young people for whom accessing information of all kinds on their mobiles is as normal as making a phone call," he added. "It fits in with our mission to make the Bible and its message accessible to a generation that reads screens more than books. The words and truth remain the same."
Mobile users can download the Bible by entering http://wapbibles.com into their phone browser.