Facebook has done it, YouTube has done it, Twitter is doing it, too. We’re talking, of course, about offering a lightweight version of the platform to make it easier for users in countries with less robust access to data to use Twitter. In April, Twitter product manager Patrick Traughber published a blog post announcing the debut of Twitter Lite, described as “a new mobile web experience which minimizes data usage, loads quickly on slower connections, is resilient on unreliable mobile networks, and takes up less than 1MB on your device.”
Though we do have Twitter Lite, it was inevitable that an app would be released elsewhere, and after a successful test in the Philippines, Twitter Lite is being made available to 24 new countries across.
For users in the Philippines, the app can be found in the Google Play Store for those who have Android 5.0 and above. It has English and Filipino support, and can be used on 2G and 3G networks. We imagine that the same will be the case in new countries, with support for their respective languages. Twitter Lite promises minimal data usage, and to be “more resilient on unreliable mobile networks,” like 2G and 3G. Plus, the app is less than 3MB, so you won’t waste too much space on your phone.
The Twitter Lite experiment is already said to have led to more than a 50 percent spike in tweets, and the company clearly hopes to continue this trajectory in its new markets.
While smartphone adoption is growing at a rapid rate around the world, infrastructure isn’t necessarily keeping up. In fact, the GSMA reports, 45 percent of mobile connections remain on 2G networks. And given that smartphone adoption is now at around 3.8 billion connections, that’s a lot of phones on slower networks.
The Twitter Lite site not only requires less data but promises 30 percent faster launch times and quicker navigation throughout the platform. Users can still be able to see the core components of the social media service, including timeline, Tweets, Direct Messages, trends, profiles, media uploads, and notifications without an app. No word if Twitter’s new night mode will come to the Lite platform.
And to make things more efficient still, Twitter’s data saver mode, could potentially reduce your data usage by up to 70 percent. Twitter Lite also offers offline support so you’ll be able to maintain your session even if your connection is spotty.
The full list of new countries includes Algeria, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Egypt, Israel, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Malaysia, Nigeria, Nepal, Panama, Peru, Serbia, El Salvador, South Africa, Thailand, Tunisia, Tanzania, and Venezuela.
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