Wed. Oct 20th, 2021

Facebook has relaunched the Instagram Lite app in India, months after taking it down from all application stores in May 2020. The announcement was made at Facebook Fuel for India event on Wednesday.

The social media giant today said that it’s testing the revamped light version of the app in India to assess and gain insights from the region before its global rollout. 

The new version of the Instagram Lite app takes 2MP space and is said to deliver “fast, reliable, and responsive” experience even when the user is on a patchy or weak network. To make it usable for mass in India, the Android app will support Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, Bangla, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Punjabi, Tamil and Telugu. The app, however, lacks some of the newly added features like Reels, IGTV and Shopping.

Who is it for?

Instagram said India is primarily a test country for Instagram Lite, which is made for Android. The company said it conducted research in India earlier this year to determine the acceptance and awareness of the new products and found ‘compromised internet experience’ to be a major barrier.

The latest Instagram Lite app is relatively heavier compared to the previous version which weighed a mere 573kb.

The toned down or ‘Lite’ version of apps allow these companies to reach users with low-cost, entry-level devices that have limited storage and processing power for accessing the internet.

Earlier this year after silently taking down the Instagram Lite app, Vishal Shah, VP of Product at Instagram, told TechCrunch that “the company had identified some issues in the app and was working to resolve those.”

In other news, Facebook is reportedly developing an AI tool to summarise news stories to make them easy and fast to consume. The tool is called “TLDR” (too long, didn’t read) which summarises news articles so users won’t have to click through to read them. It is said to compile key highlights so that users can gather the important points in a glance.

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