Mobile and Digital

Author: Cynthia Trotter (2020)

"...many of the people in the language communities in Chad do not own an Android phone. Yes, some day Android phones will be more prevalent, and their numbers are growing, albeit slowly. But we are interested in what we can do with the phones many people have right now: feature phones. Even a feature phone can be used to promote reading as well as listening to Scripture!"

Cynthia Trotter describes three different ways of promoting literacy and Scripture engagement using feature phones:

  1. Easy reader video books: created using PowerPoint slides, text in a large font size, with an image and audio recording for each slide. The presentation can be exported as a video and converted to a format viewable on feature phones.
  2. Go Bible: a Java app, usable on feature phones that support Java.
  3. PhotoBible: a set of pictures, each containing two or three verses.

Detailed instructions are provided in the article, which can be downloaded in both English and French.  [more...]

Published in Global Missiology, January 2014
Authors: T Wayne Dye, Tim Hatcher

"The worldwide spread of cell phones that can show video will enable us to bring the Scriptures into the lives of more people more effectively than ever before. Whatever the challenges, let us not miss this opportunity."

Video renditions of Bible portions are popular wherever people can even partially understand the language in which they are available. The authors of this article believe that video drama of Bible portions will quickly move from being a minor niche in Scripture distribution to a major, even central form of Scriptures for people in most language groups. They argue that because of the significant and growing influence of video Scripture portions, this medium merits much more attention than it has received in the past.

This paper focuses on the prospect for video to address a number of challenges to understanding typically addressed by paratextual elements. Video forms of key passages provide essential supplements. Short videos of selected Scripture passages can provide extensive background information more efficiently and often more effectively than traditional paratextual delivery systems. The potential for video to provide necessary historical and cultural context can be better realized through cooperation between exegetes, artists, and Scripture engagement personnel. Together, they can identify which Scripture passages could benefit most from video supplementation in particular cultural groupings.

Download the full paper as a PDF document.  [more...]

Letting go of our most valuable resources
Author: Roy Meredith (Logosdor, Australia)

"Those under 20 are ‘digital natives’ — fearless and proficient in manipulating the media with understanding of it structure and potential. It is these young people we must harness to help Christians be salt and light on the internet social networking sites."

One person can only shake hands with about 25 people in 15 seconds - but if they all keep shaking hands with others, a whole room of 250 people can be reached in 15 secs. Such is the nature of viral videos!

Roy Meredith (Logosdor, Australia) tells us about 'R U Smarter than a Fly?' - a 5 part video narrative about the birth, life and death of Jesus as seen through the eyes of flies. He discusses the idea of viral videos and how Scripture engagement needs to take place where young people are online (e.g. social networking sites).  [more...]

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

Fourth Edition - Revised for 2019

It is not hard to convince those involved in Scripture access and Scripture engagement of the value of listening to audio Scriptures. We want to assist communities in making strategic choices about how best to make them available and how best to encourage people to engage with them. One of the ways people listen to the Bible today is using a digital audio player. But since there are so many different audio players to choose from, how do we make a good choice?

This in-depth review (66 pages) compares a range of today's digital audio players including the Proclaimer (from Faith Comes By Hearing), the Envoy 2 (from MegaVoice), the Audibible K1 (from Kivah Distributors), the Papyrus and The Torch (from Renew World Outreach), the Kulumi Mini and Lost Sheep from Hope Tech Global.

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.  [more...]

A detailed comparison of the ConnectBox, LightStream Pocket, MicroPi and BibleBox Pi
Author: Martin Lange (2020)

How do you get digital resources into the hands of people who aren’t connected to the Internet? How do you distribute apps, videos, audio, documents, and images to people who can’t afford the data it would take to download those materials? What if those people live in remote areas where they don’t have access to a cellular network?

The key to distributing digital content is a Wi-Fi connection that acts like the Internet but isn’t. These units, generically referred to as “Wi-Fi Media Boxes,” show up on a user’s device as a Wi-Fi network. Yet the content offered is only what the owner of the unit loads into the memory of the Wi-Fi Media Box. Users cannot connect to the Internet through them.

Several options are currently available: the ConnectBox, the LightStream Pocket, the MicroPi and the BibleBox Pi. Each costs less than $100 US dollars, and has its advantages and disadvantages.

This paper is a review of each unit and a detailed comparison of the features each one offers compared to the others. The purpose is to help readers learn more about each unit so they can choose the one that best meets their particular needs.  [more...]