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Twitter Unveils 'Lite' Service for Emerging Markets

  • VOA News

FILE - A man reads tweets on his phone in front of a displayed Twitter logo in Bordeaux, southwestern France, March 10, 2016.

Twitter has unveiled a new, light mobile site aimed at emerging markets where people are still using slower 2G mobile connections.

Twitter Lite, according to the company, will use less data and will be up to 30 percent faster than the full Twitter website.

The service will be rolled out globally, but is primarily aimed at India, Africa and parts of Latin America.

“Twitter Lite provides the key features of Twitter, your timeline, Tweets, Direct Messages, trends, profiles, media uploads, notifications, and more,” Twitter said in a blog post.

Twitter Lite also offers a “data saver mode” that allows a user to see smaller previews of videos and images before they fully load. That could save up to 70 percent on data usage, the company said.

For Android users, Twitter Lite can still deliver push notifications as well as offline support “so you will not be interrupted while using Twitter if you temporarily lose your connection,” the company said.

According to the global mobile phone operators group, GSMA, there were 3.8 smartphone connections globally at the end of 2016.Of those, 45 percent use slower 2G networks.

Twitter is following a trend toward tech companies offering lite versions of their services. Facebook has a lite version for both the main Facebook app and its Messenger app. Microsoft offers a lite version of Skype for users in India.

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