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How Facebook packed all the important features into a 2MB Lite app

In recent years, several large, mature technology companies, such as Google, Uber, Spotify and Twitter, have been wooing the "next billion users" – people who go online with mobile devices for the first time. instead of desktops. Attracting this new audience requires the optimization of services and software optimized for the prevailing conditions in developing markets, such as: These include unreliable connectivity, slow Internet speeds, and the proliferation of mobile devices.

Companies began to develop a "Lite" version of their devices apps that can run on most cell phones and do not consume much storage space on the device (less than 1

0 MB). The main reason was that many people uninstalled apps to make room for some photos, videos or music. These apps were also designed to use the minimum amount of data and to function even if the network conditions were not ideal. As a result, these companies developed lite apps that were much smaller and clearer than their main counterparts.

Facebook is proud to have been one of the first to launch a lite app in 2015. When TNW met The team responsible for developing and improving the app told us how they managed to import almost all features from the main app while keeping their size below two megabytes.

The story

At first, as the team The development of the first version of Facebook Lite was about providing users with device, network and data restrictions with a very simple version of Facebook. In terms of functionality, the app was limited, and the interface looked like a rudimentary mobile site.