People who used and loved Wordsearch were likely disappointed when Logos and Faithlife bought the company and announced they would eventually shut it down. That time has come so what should a Wordsearch user do now? Here’s the best way to continue studying the Bible digitally now that Faithlife and Logos ended support for Wordsearch Bible Software.
Logos Stops Wordsearch Support: What Does It Mean to Me?
Logos announced they planned to stop supporting Wordsearch, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use the software. You can. Just don’t uninstall it or buy a new computer unless you have the installer and your books backed up.
Logos sent out an email to Wordsearch owners that said:
You will not be able to download the desktop and mobile apps in the future
You will not be able to download your books to the desktop/laptop or mobile Wordsearch apps.
That’s frustrating if you want to keep using Wordsearch after buying a new computer, phone, or tablet. You’ll need to find a new different way to get access to the program or start using Logos or some other app or program.
On your desktop or laptop computer, you can do a backup of your computer that includes your installation of Wordsearch and find a way to port it over to your new computer or a computer that you had to reformat or erase. That’s more complicated than we have time to discuss in this post. A Google search will likely find dozens of options for Windows or Mac users.
Wordsearch users can also keep using the program on their current computer, phone, or tablet. The company won’t cripple Wordsearch apps for software already installed. So keep using it knowing you won’t get app or book updates. You also can’t add new content, so if that commentary series you love gets a new volume, you’ll have to find it in another format to enjoy it digitally.
Start Using Logos Instead of Wordsearch
Logos would love for you to start using their software. That’s the whole reason they bought out Wordsearch, to get their users and their library of books.
If you want to start using Logos, then go over to the Logos website and see what version of Logos they gave you when they bought out Wordsearch.
In addition to a version of Logos, you will also get most of your books from your Wordsearch library in Logos. They will download after you install Logos on your computer or mobile device. A small percentage of books won’t make the trip over to Logos.
The best alternative comes from the folks at Accordance Bible Software. They offer a complex and powerful software program that brings you every feature you need to study the Bible at a scholarly level but also works well for pastors, teachers, and lay Bible students.
Switching from Wordsearch will cost more than going to Logos since Logos offers free software and gives you most of the books you own in Wordsearch format. However, you may not want to use Logos. You can get the $200 Crossgrade for Accordance. Crossgrades take the term “upgrade” and marry it with cross-over to form a crossgrade.
In addition to the Wordsearch crossgrade, you can crossgrade many of your books. Just contact Accordance to learn what it will cost. In both cases, you’ll need to fill out a form proving you already own either Wordsearch or the books you want to buy via crossgrade.
Other Bible Software Options
Logos and Accordance aren’t the only games in town. You can also find great options from the following:
n Olive Tree Bible – Olive Tree provides a decent desktop or laptop computer program, but also has the best mobile app you can get on iOS or Android. They sell a lot of books too.
Laridian PocketBible – You won’t get as many books with Laridian as you will with Olive Tree, Accordance, or Logos. However, the developer does a nice job of creating a stable platform with some unique features, like showing 4 or more window pains on mobile, something can’t get from any other app that I know of. With Book Builder you can make your own books for PocketBible on Android, Windows, iOS and Mac.
e-Sword – The long time free Bible study program from Rick Meyers will seem simplistic compared to the other programs in this article. However, if a user doesn’t like Logos and can’t afford the others, then free books from e-Sword will help you with your study needs until you can afford something a little more advanced. Some Wordsearch users will find that it’s all they need. If you want some modern Bibles and books you can buy them from eStudySource.
What should you do if you were a Wordsearch user who wished they were still in business?
Keep using Wordsearch. You can still use it as long as you don’t change computers and even then might be able to jump through some technical hoops to get it to work on a new computer.
Go ahead and get Logos installed, if you have space on your computer’s hard drive. You can also install it on your mobile devices. If you used the minimalist Wordsearch mobile apps, you will find that Logos does so much more. This will confuse some users who were Wordsearch’s simple book reader app. But most will view it as a huge upgrade on mobile. Spend time about Logos until you feel comfortable using it for your digital Bible study.
Get free versions of Accordance, Olive Tree, e-Sword, or Laridian’s PocketBible. Try them out and see which one you like best. Then start looking into getting the books you need for your study.
Mobile users should look at Logos, Olive Tree, or Laridian first. They are the best mobile apps for serious Bible study. Accordance gets honorable mention if you are using iOS, but Android users should look elsewhere because Accordance on Android is too limited right now. They plan to upgrade making it more useful, but Logos, Olive Tree, and Laridian are so much better on Android.
Dr. Kevin Purcell is pastor of High Peak Baptist Church, an author and writer at Church Tech Today (www.churchtechtoday.com). He used to write for a number of other Christian and secular technology and mobile tech sites. Now he's one of the hosts of the Theotek Podcast, which you can find by checking the menu above or over at www.facebook.com/theotekpodcast.