Instagram is joining the growing list of apps being customized for developing markets. The Facebook-owned photo-sharing platform has silently launched “Instagram Lite” for Android on the Google Play Store.
Instagram Lite is a 573kB download and it is way smaller than the 32MB download of main app on Play Store. “The Instagram Lite app is small, allowing you to save space on your phone and download it quickly” the app description reads. The Lite app lets users filter and post photos to the feed or Stories and it even allows you to watch Stories from other friends. There is also an option to browse the service via Explore tab but lacks option like sharing videos or Direct message friends, the major features available on main app.
With Instagram Lite, the Facebook-owned service is addressing the need for an application that consumes little memory in emerging markets. The app is designed primarily for those using devices with little memory and low-powered processor. The application also consumes much less data and will be convenient for those who cannot afford expensive data packages.
The Instagram Lite app follows the launch of redesigned mobile website last month. Instagram confirmed to TechCrunch that it is testing the Instagram Lite in Mexico but it is not clear whether the application will show any ads. The app is set to expand to other markets later this year.
In 2015, Facebook launched a lightweight version of its app called Facebook Lite and followed up with the launch of Messenger Lite early this year. Ride hailing service including Uber and Ola offer lightweight versions of their main app. Recently, Google launched a bunch of less memory intensive apps as part of Android Go program.
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Early this week, Instagram started roll out of video chat and revamped Explore tab for its users on Android and iOS. The service also announced IGTV this month as a dedicated platform for watching hour-long videos. Instagram is turning out to be a juggernaut in Facebook’s array of social media services and a Bloomberg report claimed it could be valued at as much as $100 billion.