Silicon Valley tech companies are taking data-light apps for India rather seriously. After Microsoft rolled out Skype Lite earlier this year, LinkedIn has announced the LinkedIn Lite app — a stripped down version of LinkedIn’s Android app that takes up less than 1 MB of storage. The app comes nine months after LinkedIn Lite, developed in Bangalore, launched on the mobile web for India users. LinkedIn Lite for Android will be taken to 60 other markets soon, according to reports.
LinkedIn has steadily grown in India riding on the usage of LinkedIn Lite site in Tier 2 and Tier 3 towns where network connectivity is poor and people mostly use low-end handsets. At present, the professional networking company has 42 million users in India which is one of its top markets in Asia-Pacific. Globally it has 500 million users. LinkedIn’s India head told ET that the company had tested the new app in several overseas markets and had witnessed significant growth in user engagement. ALSO READ: Microsoft Skype Lite comes with Aadhaar-based authentication feature
LinkedIn claims that the new app can load pages in five seconds “even on a 2G network” and it will reduce data usage by 80 percent. However, most LinkedIn features — news feed, jobs, profile, access to your LinkedIn network, messaging, notifications, and search — are retained. “Besides providing a fast, data-light solution for professionals in slow network areas, we hope the LinkedIn Lite app will democratize access to economic opportunity,” LinkedIn’s country manager for India, said in a statement. ALSO READ: Facebook Messenger Lite launched in India with focus on low-end Android smartphones
LinkedIn is following in the footsteps of Facebook, which witnessed tremendous growth for Facebook Lite, its pared down version for Android, which crossed 200 million users and contributed significantly to the company’s overseas revenues. Launched in 2015, Facebook Lite grew faster than Facebook’s original app. Buoyed by its success, the Mark Zuckerberg-owned company rolled out Messenger Lite for Android last year. The service was made available in five countries initially, but has now expanded to over 100 markets. Surely LinkedIn would look to replicate that with LinkedIn Lite.