The main app of Facebook is a huge download. You will need 500MB of storage on your iOS device to enjoy its features.
Thankfully, the company created Facebook Lite. It is a slimmed down variation of the main app. Facebook designed it for people living in developing countries, where mobile data are unreliable.
However, even those individuals who live in nations where mobile data are sufficient to want the slimmed down version. Their reason is that the lite version utilizes fewer data compared to the main app.
As it uses less data, you can save space on your iOS device. Furthermore, it can work with 2G. Unlike the main app, the slimmed down version is only less than 5MB.
Despite its “lightness,” Facebook Lite still includes the main functionalities found in the main app, like photos, news feed, and notifications. It also includes the ability to locate events and businesses locally.
A few months ago, the company published its Facebook Lite but it was only designed for Android. It was also released in Canada, Australia, UK, US, Germany, and France.
Facebook stated that Facebook Lite will assist every user to have an outstanding experience when they are using the app. This slimmed version is a standalone app that comes with vital functionalities, like News Feed, camera and photo integration as well as status updates.
Since it consumes less data but displays the latest updates of your friends, it is not surprising that people in countries where the Internet is excellent would also want it.
But it is not the company’s first time to slim down its main app’s versions. In the past decade, it has provided different versions of its website, like Facebook Zero. Furthermore, it has provided free Internet in select countries via its Free Basics program. Unfortunately, some governments were against it.
Facebook also hires a dedicated team that aims to find ways to reduce data traffic to its app, like photos, showing ads and 360-degree videos.
The company’s most significant effort was in 2014 when it published a separate Messenger app, which is used to send DMs to one user from another. The functionality was later eliminated from the main app. The goal of separating Messenger from the main app was to speed up the main app and to provide better functionality to users. Unfortunately, not all users were happy about the decision as they needed to download another app, which can take up space.
At the moment, Facebook Lite can only be used by individuals in Turkey. Currently, the company is testing it out according to a person familiar with the update.
Facebook is known to launch its new products in some countries before its wider launch. Through its help page, the said slimmed version is only available in select nations.
It is not clear whether or not Facebook Lite for iOS would be rolled out to US users.
Facebook is not the only social media that published a lite version for its app though. YouTube, Skype and Twitter, and several others offer lite versions for users of Android devices.