Eighty per cent of mobile phone users in India have 2G connections, and most of them use Android smartphones. Keeping in mind the existing scenario, Facebook has made an app exclusively catering to these.
What is Facebook Lite?
Facebook Lite is a lighter version of the social media application used widely. It is made specifically for the areas and people who still use 2G on their smartphones. The app is most effective for slower data connections.
"There are a large number of users, who are on 2G, and one of the feedbacks we have received is that the app does not load fast on some devices. This lighter version has been developed so that the app works well across all network conditions and on all types of phones," Vijay Shankar, Product Manager at Facebook Lite to The Huffington Post.
How will the new app help Indian smartphone users?
Many smartphone users in India are still on 2G network. Therefore, it was necessary to develop a dedicated app which solely caters to the need of such users. Facebook Lite is one such blessing. The app will feature all the core functions like the full-version app, including news feed, status updates, messeger, and notifications.
It will enable the people to select the quality of images, high resolution pictures can be modified to low resolution pictures, which will run smoothly on 2G connections.This will not require a high bandwidth and this is how it will help 2G user base in India.
Why is India important for Facebook?
India is Facebook's second largest market in the world and it growing hotfoot. According to a report by eMarketer, "India -- the world's second largest Facebook audience - will surpass 100 million mobile phone Facebook users for the first time this year and by 2017, will have more mobile Facebook users than the US.
"Also by 2017, "India will have the largest mobilephone userbase at 145.9 million", says the report. Around 45 million users in India are using their mobile phones every day to connect with their friends on Facebook.The app has hit the Indian market on 29 June.
The app is merely 252 KB in file size as compared to the default version of the Facebook app which is of 27 MB. This makes it easier to load at lower speed and will work smoothly on entry-level smartphones which have low memory space.