Facebook-owned Instagram is testing Instagram Lite in India. As the name suggests, Instagram Lite is a “lite” take on the original Instagram app for Android, designed specifically to run well on low-cost handsets and slow internet. This is not the first time Instagram is launching Instagram Lite though. The lite app first broke cover in 2018 and was pulled down earlier this year on account of some purported issues. It seems Instagram has taken the time out to resolve those issues. Other issues, if any, could be ironed out in the app’s second coming, but it seems Instagram is in a much better position to roll it out globally this time.
Much like with Reels, Instagram is also making India a “key” testing ground for its new Instagram Lite app. “India is an important market for us and has been a testing ground for innovation. India was one of the first few countries where we tested Reels, and the first country where we launched the Reels tab. In order to expand the appeal of Instagram to users across the country, today we’re announcing the test of Instagram Lite in India,” Vishal Shah, VP of Product at Instagram said during his Facebook Fuel for India 2020 keynote on Wednesday. “We’re hoping to gain valuable insights before a global rollout of Instagram Lite.”
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Instagram Lite is a trimmed-down version of Instagram weighing in at less than 2MB. Instagram had to remove some marquee new-age features like Reels, Shopping and IGTV from the whole experience though this might be a small price to pay to achieve the “fast, reliable and responsive” end-product. Instagram is also touting localized aspects of Instagram Lite as the app will be available in as many as nine languages, including Bangla, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Punjabi, Tamil and Telugu.
Alongside Instagram Lite, Instagram also announced the second iteration of its “Born on Instagram” campaign to offer the next generation of content creators masterclasses from internal and external experts on how to use the platform more effectively, including guidance on some of its new features like Reels.
“With the test of Instagram Lite, and the next edition of Born on Instagram, we’re aiming to democratise expression and creativity for a greater number of people in India,” Shah added.