New Media

A video-text Bible product
Published by: WatchWORD Productions

"My daily appointment with my Bible has come alive since I discovered this video Bible. God not only speaks to me as I see the words of scripture but hearing them read keeps me concentrating."

The WatchWORD Bible is an example of a video-text Bible product, where you hear can the Bible read and see the text on the screen against the background of quality video photography.

The combination of seeing and hearing aids concentration and memory.  [more...]

Listening to the translated Scriptures: a review of today’s digital audio players
Author: Richard Margetts

Third Edition - Revised for 2014

This in-depth review (46 pages) compares a range of today's digital audio players including the Proclaimer and Mini-Proclaimer (from Faith Comes By Hearing), the Envoy S and Story Teller (from MegaVoice), the Saber (from Global Recordings Network), the Papyrus (from Renew World Outreach) and the Audibible (from Davar Partners International).

The review is presented in several sections, illustrated with photos and giving a summary of the key features, prices, pros and cons of each player. Also mentioned are feature phones, smartphones and locally available MP3 players.

The first edition of the document was published in 2008 and compared the Proclaimer, MegaVoice Ambassador and Saber. In the past six years we have seen:

  1. New entrants to the digital audio player world: the Papyrus, the Audibible, the Story Teller, Mini Proclaimer, the Herald and the Shofar.
  2. Significant development of existing players: The MegaVoice Ambassadors were retired and replaced by the Envoy. A solar-powered version of the Talking Bible is available, as is a new version of the Proclaimer. More internal memory was added to the Papyrus.
  3. New battery technology: Most players now use newer Lithium Ion Polymer or Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries rather than the NiMH type.
  4. Digital file sharing: Almost gone are the days of cassette tape. In most countries of the world, people are interacting with digital media and are increasingly familiar with memory cards and MP3 files.
  5. Mobile phones: The incredible growth in mobile phone ownership and use over the past six years means that most of the world’s population now have their own personal audio player.
  6. Download the full report as a PDF document.

  [more...]
Some implications of mobile phone technology for Scripture distribution
Author: Richard Margetts

"When it comes to audio and video products, the mobile phone can be an effective method of getting the Scriptures to people... who then pass them on to other people... who then pass them on to other people..."

This article discusses some of the implications of mobile phone technology for encouraging the sharing of audio/video Scripture products. Questions raised include:

  1. Who is your target audience?
  2. What are the best Scripture products for the phone?
  3. How will people get their first copy of the media files which they can then share with their friends?
  4. Are there any copyright issues involved?
  5. How could mobile phone technology become an obstacle to people engaging seriously with God’s Word?
  6. What are the most positive aspects of using mobile phones for Scripture distribution?
  [more...]
3 Free Mobile Phone Video Converters Compared
Author: David Phillips

How do you get Scripture video into a format that people can watch and share on their mobile phones? You'll need a program that can convert video to 3GP and MP4 file formats.

In this paper, David Phillips compares three video conversion programs: Miksoft’s Mobile Media Converter, Acala 3GP Movies Free, and Any Video Converter.

Choosing the right video file type can take some trial and error with sample phones among your target audience. You might need to distribute mobile phone video in at least two file types. For example, H.263 3GPP (.3gp) video files are used for many low-end phones with small screen sizes and less powerful processors. MPEG-4/H.264 (.mp4 or .3gp) video files are what you'll need for higher-end phones and smartphones (such as the iPhone) which have larger screen sizes and faster processors.

There are all kinds of options to choose from (video and audio codecs, bitrates, frame rate, sampling frequency, screen size, etc.), so it can get complicated. That's why it's good to have a converter program that meets your needs and level of expertise, giving you the options you need but not too many to confuse you.  [more...]

Author: Lamar Vest (President and CEO, American Bible Society)
Published by: The Huffington Post (11 May 2010)

"The Bible has yet to beat the perception of being a dusty old rule book among millennials largely because to substantiate relevance and garner interest, the text first must be read... The message of the Bible is unchanging, but how we deliver that message not only can change, but must."

Lamar Vest discusses some of the strategies the American Bible Society is using to encourage the millennial generation to engage with the Scriptures, including creative delivery methods and "new tools that put the user in the driver's seat of their Bible experience".  [more...]

Author: Ed (One Hundred Fold Consulting)
Published by: Mobile Ministry Forum

A presentation given at the Mobile Ministry Forum Consultation in December 2011, highlighting 7 key trends in the mobile space:

  1. Saturation - It is projected that we'll reach 7 billion mobile phone subscriptions in 2012. That doesn't mean everyone will have a phone, but most will have access, whether with their own phone or through friends and family. In 2011, there were 1 billion mobile broadband subscriptions. 2 billion smartphones are predicted for 2015.
  2. Mini Tablets/e-Readers - These are becoming more affordable, such as the $60 tablets being developed in India for school children.
  3. Operating Systems - Android sales are increasing, although a large proportion of current phones run on Symbian.
  4. Content - New content repositories are being created, such as REAP (SIL), ETEN (Every Tribe Every Nation), TWR's Linguablast and LinguaDMS.
  5. Facebook - Facebook is expected to reach 1 billion users in 2012.
  6. Engagement - There's a desire to encourage and measure engagement with content. It's estimated that 90% users read/watch content, 9% interact with it (e.g. comment/like/share), and 1% create new content.
  7. Security - Complete anonymity doesn't exist. There is an increased ability to monitor people's mobile use. Sharing SD cards and bluetooth transfers are safer in sensitive situations. Some countries are trying to phase out anonymous SIM cards, requiring people to register.

Watch the video in Vimeo...  [more...]

A brief introduction to mobile ministry and its place in world missions
Author: Keith Williams
Published by: Mobile Ministry Forum

An exciting growth area for Scripture Engagement practitioners is working out how mobile phones can be used around the world to encourage the use of the Scriptures.

This 5-minute video presents an introduction to the possibilities of mobile ministry:  [more...]