I briefly mentioned Bible+ by Olive Tree in my last post. Here I’ll give a full review.
What It Is
Bible+ by Olive Tree is a leading Bible study app for mobile devices. It lets you read from four different Bible versions, compare versions in adjacent linked panes, view copious annotations and notes, take your own notes, tag passages, sync across devices, share passages across social media, and other good stuff. It even works offline. (Full feature list on Google Play.)
What It Does Best
Bible+ by Olive Tree is for the avid Bible student or autodidact.The ability to rapidly jump around from verse to verse via the annotations and notes makes for an engrossing, non-linear Bible-exploration experience. For example, if you’re on the hunt for an obscure Christological typology in the Prophets as it relates to the Gospel, this is your app. As you kick back and read, anytime you feel the need to cross-reference something with another part of the Bible for further insight (a literary analysis process called intertextual exegesis), just click the preceding superscript letter or number (if there is one) and a pop-up window appears to display any related verses.
Tips on Using It
- When clicking superscript letters and numbers, just know that letters are notes (historical facts, definitions, etc.) while numbers are annotations (linked references to related verses.)
- Don’t worry about losing your place. The “back” buttons work just fine, and opening the annotations and notes pane doesn’t navigate you away from your place.
- When viewing two Bible versions in adjacent panes, you can unlink and link the panes, i.e., synchronize them so that when you scroll in the main pane at left, the secondary pane at right auto-scrolls. Just click the menu at top-right and select “Un-Link Windows” or “Link Windows.”
Which Bible Versions It Uses
Four Protestant canons: English Standard Version, King James Version, New International Version, and New King James Version. Sorry, fellow Catholics, no Tobit here (an absolutely beautiful tale.) You can download more versions (and other publications) via in-app purchases.
How Shiny It Is
It’s been downloaded millions of times, has some glowing reviews on Google Play, and is published by HarperCollins Christian Publishing — so you know they’re not skimping on the attraction factor and functionality.
You can download any e-book to read in Bible+ by Olive Tree, and when you do, anytime the text mentions a chapter and verse to a Bible passage, it is automatically converted to a link to the passage. Nifty.
What’s Wrong With It
It’s tedious to use on a phone for longer than an hour or so. Best used on a tablet.
Why I Wrote About It Here
Nobody paid me; I just like it and I want you to READ. YOUR. BIBLE.