The Siddur — the Jewish prayer book — is one of the essential texts in every Jewish home and is an important part of daily Jewish life both at home and beyond. It can be found in cars, briefcases, purses and backpacks of Jews of all backgrounds.
To the uninitiated, however, the constantly shifting set of daily prayers can sometimes be confusing. Even experienced users at times may need to flip back and forth within the siddur, searching for the right prayers for a given day.
Chabad.org in partnership with Kehot Publication Society, are therefore pleased announce the latest in Chabad.org’s suite of apps: The Annotated Siddur Tehilat Hashem – Linear Edition, an innovative new “smart” siddur app.
Kehot Publication Society, the publishing arm of the Chabad-Lubavitchmovement and publisher of its popular annotated linear siddur, has partnered with Chabad.org to make these prayer books available in the palm of your hand with a clear focus on making the prayer experience as seamless and accessible as possible.
The Chabad.org team worked for two years together with the Kehot team, researching and developing a fully functional ‘smart siddur,’ presenting the various insertions of weekday prayers in a single ready-to-use format. Thus prayers for the Rosh Chodesh, weekly Torahreadings and special insertions for fast days appear seamlessly in their proper place. Of timely note, the app will include the Eicha and Kinottexts for the 9th of Av.
Strategic alerts remind the user of these additions while scrolling past the page.
At the backbone of this app is a highly customized engine that controls the logic and algorithms for the smart siddur display. The app allows for continued customizations by the siddur team, leaving the potential open for future upgrades to support varying traditions such as the Ashkenaziand Sefardic
The Siddur uses a fresh clean typeface and will be available in three flavors: Classic Hebrew edition; Hebrew/English edition; and a Linear Hebrew/English edition. The first app being released now is the Linear Edition.
The app takes advantage of the user’s location, displaying the halachic times for prayer right on the homescreen of the app. Additional features include, an intelligent Hebrew and English search function, a compass for orienting prayer towards Jerusalem and a tefillin mirror that uses the phone’s front-facing camera to properly align tefillin on the head.
The app was dedicated by an anonymous donor in honor of Asher Dovid Milstein. Chabad.org’s family of apps are made possible by the generous partnership of Dovid and Malkie Smetana, Alan and Lori Zekelman, the Meromim Fund, and Moris and Lillian Tabacinic.
The Linear edition of the siddur is currently available for download on both iOS and Android for early adopters at the special pre-release price of $3.99 until September 1st. Other editions, including the Classic Hebrew and Hebrew/English are currently still being finalized.