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Facebook Messenger Lite for Android announced; here's everything you need to know

Facebook Messenger Lite for Android announced; here's everything you need to know

Facebook's Messenger Lite app rolls out to users in Malaysia, Tunisia, Venezuela and Kenya today.

Earlier this year, Facebook announced that Messenger has more than 1 billion active users worldwide.

The Messenger Lite application uses less data and is created to work in areas with comparatively slower internet connections. The new app has been launched for emerging markets to address slower data speeds.

The app allows users to send photos, texts and links, but it will not do video calls.

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According to Facebook, "Messenger Lite is a slimmed down version of Messenger that offers the core features of Messenger for markets with slower than average internet speeds and a prevalence of basic Android smartphones". Clearly, though, the social network is determined to continue its push to get developing countries online, and more specifically on to Facebook. It uses the same logo as Messenger, but with the colours reversed to make it distinguishable. Facebook also says that the app is fast and easy to download, with a size of under 10MB.

Unlike Free Basics and internet.org, which are wide-ranging internet accessibility projects with multiple partners, Messenger Lite is focused purely on giving Android phone owners the very basics of Facebook's popular messaging service. The existence of Messenger Lite appears to be an admission by Facebook that Messenger is coming to outgrow its core concept. As CNET reports, this new release is smaller than its predecessor and is specially designed for older model Android smartphones.

Facebook Messenger Lite is the latest of Facebook's numerous efforts to make the Internet more accessible worldwide.

With emerging markets becoming an increasingly important space for tech companies and their services, it is no wonder Facebook is targeting countries that are not quite as advanced when it comes to connectivity and hardware.

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