The Current State of Mac Bible Study Software
Where have we come in the last year?
by David Lang (Posted: 11/29/06)
Lots of Catching Up To Do
A year ago, I posted an article detailing the most recent developments in Bible Software for the Mac. I've been so busy since then I'm afraid I've been letting the CMUG web-site languish, but I don't want any more time to slip by without updating you on this past year's developments in Mac Bible software.
Before I do, however, I need to make the requisite caveat: I work for the developers of Accordance Bible Software, so I am hardly an impartial observer of the developments I am about to report. I'll do my best to stick to facts rather than opinions, but you need to be aware of my obvious biases.
Accordance Bible Software: Continuing Momentum
One of the reasons I've been neglecting CMUG for the past year is that I've been working so much on the development of Accordance. I'm not alone in that. Nearly everyone at OakTree Software has been working extremely hard all year. Consequently, there are numerous developments to report.
The Accordance application received a major upgrade to version 7.0 in May of this year, and has recently been updated to 7.1. New features include:
In addition to the application itself, the past year has seen a slew of new Accordance modules and CD-ROMs. These include:
The list of new materials released this year goes on and on, but these are just a few of the highlights. You can follow the latest Accordance developments by visiting the Accordance blog, also started this year.
Online Bible for OS X: Still in Beta
Last July a public beta of Online Bible for OS X was made available for download. Incredibly, Online Bible is still in beta a year-and-a-half later. The good news is that it has been pretty stable and fully functional since it was first made available, but apparently there are still known bugs which have yet to be resolved. According to the most recent report:
The current beta can be downloaded here.
MacSword, iBible, and Bible Reader Free: Little to Report
Last year, MacSword received a significant upgrade and seemed to be gaining momentum, but this year has been extremely quiet. With the exception of an announcement in March that MacSword modules are now easier to download, and that a modern German translation is now available, there have been no visible developments in the last year.
Similarly, iBible and Bible Reader Free both announced plans to rewrite their software as Cocoa applications last year, but there appears to have been no progress since then. The developer of Bible Reader Free recently announced that he still has a desire to update the software, but work and family commitments have kept him from doing so. The developer of iBible has made no announcements in a year, so it's unclear whether work is progressing. At this point, iBible has not been updated in about three years.
QuickVerse for Mac: New Package Available
Last June, QuickVerse released a version of its software for Macintosh. At the time, they offered only two packages: a "White Box" for $49 and a "Black Box" for $99. In the past year, they have quietly raised the price of these packages to $59.95 and $129.95 respectively, and have released a new "Gold Box" collection for $349.95.
The QuickVerse Mac application does not appear to have been updated in the last year. The Windows version appears to have been upgraded twice since the Mac version was released.
Logos for Mac: Continued Delays
Last March, Logos announced that they would be porting their software to the Mac and that it would be available in December of 2005. In mid-November, however, Logos announced a new release date of "Spring 2006." That date later slipped to "late summer," "late fall," and now "first quarter 2007."
The following bits and pieces of information about Logos' plans have come out in the past year and a half:
Bob Pritchett, the president of Logos, has offered the following reports of Logos' progress on the Logos for Mac newsgroup:
In September, he wrote:
In November, he added:
Last year was perhaps the most "newsworthy" year ever for Macintosh Bible software. This year, things have been decidedly mixed. On the one hand, Accordance has released a major program upgrade and quite a few new products, while QuickVerse has released a third package in its Mac product line. On the other hand, the various Mac shareware programs seem to be in a holding pattern, and Logos for Mac continues to be delayed. It will be interesting to see what new developments there will be to report in 2007.