With the rise of smartphones has come a variety of Bible apps that people can carry with them and read anywhere. How do you choose one? Here are the main contenders:
BibleGateway: This app occupies the middle ground between YouVersion and OliveTree/Logos. It offers some further resources but isn’t as customizable as the more comprehensive apps.
Pros: Easy to read and easy search functions. Some translations available in audio in addition to text.
Con: Missing the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV).
Logos: Like Olive Tree, Logos is designed to serve as a complete digital library. It also has a large selection of free and paid resources you can easily add to your phone.
Pros: A huge variety of resources—some for free, some for purchase. Much of the interface and experience is customizable.
Con: Compared to Olive Tree, an internet connection is needed more often on Logos to read the materials.
Olive Tree: More than just a Bible, this app offers a comprehensive selection of study tools and theological resources.
Pros: A huge variety of resources (including Augsburg Fortress’ Lutheran Study Bible)—some for free, some for purchase. Much of the interface and experience is customizable.
Con: The choices available can be overwhelming if you just want to quickly look up a passage.
YouVersion: This is the most downloaded and widely used Bible app.
Pros: Easiest to read. Intuitive interface.
Con: Missing the NRSV, the most commonly used translation in ELCA congregations.
I love my print Bible, and it’s still my primary, but I love having a Bible with me wherever I go without lugging around my 5-pound study Bible. All of these apps are free, so download them all to find the one that will encourage you to read Scripture more frequently.