Facebook rolled out a new Android app for its social media service on Thursday that uses less data and runs faster in regions with spotty connections.The app, called Facebook Lite, is available in countries across Asia and will soon make its way to parts of Latin America, Africa and Europe, Vijay Shankar, product manager for Facebook Lite, said in an interview. In many of those countries, people still use 2G networks, which are much slower and have less power than the 4G networks in many developed nations.
The app uses less than one-half of a megabyte of data to limit data usage and rates for those in emerging markets. While it still supports Facebook’s News Feed, status updates, notifications and photos, it does not support videos and advanced location services.
More than a billion people around the world access Facebook from a range of mobile devices on varying networks. In many areas, networks can be slow and not able to support all the functionality found in Facebook for Android. Facebook Lite was built for these situations, giving people a reliable Facebook experience when bandwidth is at a minimum.
Facebook Lite is less than 1MB so it is fast to install and quick to load. It includes Facebook’s core experiences like News Feed, status updates, photos, notifications and more.