Twitter is testing an Andoird app for Twitter Lite, the native app of a mobile site the social network launched this year, a version that uses less mobile data. This means that the app is useful especially in new markets where data networks are still slower and more expensive than the once available in Europe and USA, for example.
The new app is being run currently in the Philippines, but only in test mode, right now. A Twitter spokesperson said that “the test of the Twitter Lite app in the Google Play Store in the Philippines is another opportunity to increase the availability of Twitter in this market. The Philippines market has slow mobile networks and expensive data plans, while mobile devices with limited storage are still very popular there. Twitter Lite helps to overcome these barriers to usage for Twitter in the Philippines.”
The app appears to have the same basic functions of Twitter app.
A faster, data-friendly way to see what’s happening in the world right now.
Get breaking news, sports scores, and entertainment updates. Interact with brands and your government, easily market your business, quickly provide or receive customer service–all while using less of your data plan.
Twitter Lite is fast to install, space- and data-friendly:
Loads quickly on 2G and 3G networks
Minimizes data usage — Turn on data saver mode to download only the images or videos you want to see.
Takes up less space — At an install size under 3MB, Twitter Lite doesn’t take much room on your phone.
It is possible to switch to a media-free mode, which will let users to be able to select specific media for downloading, and this is a crucial features for emerging markets, since photos and videos are the most “data expensive” content.
There is also another point. During the recent years Twitter tried to become more a media company in order to capture more audience. But this part of the platform would be almost unusuable on smartphones located in places like Philippines, so it is fundamental to have the ability to show to these users less data.
Twitter expanding Lite is not a surprising choice, especially after the words of the CEO Jack Dorsey:“We’ve been working over the past few months on some early foundational work, and Twitter Lite represents one of these. One of our goals is to make sure Twitter is accessible to anyone in the world. And Twitter Lite exactly hits on this particular goal. Especially in places like India, we found that our app was just way too slow to access. So we have areas in the world where network infrastructure is more costly, and we could be a lot better in terms of serving those markets and those countries. So it’s way too soon to access the — to assess the usage trends, but our initial results look really positive.”
Twitter is not the first social network realizing a Lite version: LinkedIn already launched its Android app this year, while Facebook Lite has already more than 500 millions active installs.
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