The makers of YouVersion, the Bible app that enables mobile phone and tablet users to study Scripture in many ways, are celebrating a milestone this week – 30 million installations.
The free Bible app has been installed on one out of every 17 iPhones, iPads and Android devices sold globally. The Bible app is available on the iPad, iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, Windows Phone, WebOS and Java phones, as well as many Web-enabled mobile devices.
YouVersion, which began exclusively as an online Bible, was created by a team at LifeChurch.tv in September of 2007. In April of the next year, YouVersion launched the Bible App, an application that further increased access and interaction with the Bible.
Users have logged 11 billion minutes of “reading the Bible on the go,” said YouVersion officials.
“What's most exciting about this milestone is not the numbers themselves, but what they represent. Millions of people are embracing a new way to engage with Scripture,” YouVersion creator and pastor Bobby Gruenewald told The Christian Post. “Over and over, we hear from people who've made God's Word a daily part of their lives simply because it's always nearby.”
Gruenewald is designated by LifeChurch.tv as its Innovation Leader. When asked whether he was satisfied with the rate at which Christians are embracing this technology, Gruenewald said the numbers just reflect an enormous potential for more growth.
“While 30 million installations and more than 11 billion minutes reading Scripture with the Bible App is certainly something to celebrate, we believe it's just the beginning,” he said. “There are more than 5 billion phones in the world, and people spend a total of 300 million minutes of game play every day in Angry Birds. We've got plenty of room to grow.”
YouVersion and Bible App users have bookmarked 30 million verses and shared more than 1.6 million verses on Facebook and Twitter. The website and app offer more than 190 Bible reading plans.
On a recent Sunday, the YouVersion community created an average of 2.7 highlights per second, for a total of 233,000 highlights in one day, the company reports.
“When we launched YouVersion, it would have been hard for us to imagine that 30 million devices would have installed the app in this short amount of time and engaged with Scripture to the degree that our community has,” Gruenewald said. “Seeing that, we believe we could see a half billion or even 1 billion people using the Bible App to engage with Scripture within this decade.”
“It’s extremely bold to predict, but we believe the potential is there to be the most Bible-engaged generation in history,” he said.
LifeChurch.tv, based in Edmond, Okla., is known for taking unconventional approaches to ministry by developing technology and leveraging web-based tools to share the Gospel. Craig Groeschel is the founding and senior pastor of the church that was launched in 1996.
The church meets in 14 locations around the United States and globally online.
“We want to leverage the best of today's and tomorrow's technology to help the world fall in love with God's Word. We're pursuing new languages, new versions, new platforms and new features like helping people engage with Scripture in community,” Gruenewald said.
View a YouVersion info-graph marking the milestone at The Christian Post.