Facebook has launched Facebook Lite, a version of its app for Android users that uses less data and hence will be suitable for networks in emerging markets.
Product manager Vijay Shankar said the app was “fast to install and quick to load” and is built to give users “a reliable Facebook experience when bandwidth is at a minimum”.
The app will include Facebook’s “core experiences” like news feed and status updates and for starters will be available in countries across Asia. It is expected to be rolled out in parts of Latin America, Africa and Europe in coming weeks.
The app was piloted in emerging markets in January and quickly crossed 10,000 downloads.
As part of its strategy for emerging markets, Facebook has also launched its Internet.org initiative that allows free access to more than two dozen websites and is available in around 12 markets, but has received criticism from net neutrality advocates.