Instagram released Instagram Lite in December of last year, a light-weight version of its main app tailored for users with poor internet connections and low-end smartphones. The app was only available in India at the time, with the company promising to expand it to other markets later. Instagram Lite is now available in over 170 countries, according to the company.
The new Lite version of the application is only 2MB in size. By comparison, the standard version of the app is 30MB in size. The new version is expected to run at 2G network speeds.
The new version of Lite will skip some features such as Reels and IGTV that use short video features. It’s going to have the ability to add stickers, create and view Stories, IGTV, and Explore discovery and recommendation algorithms.
One way the app reduces its size is to break down Java libraries into smaller chunks, retain only the features that the app needs, and get rid of others. When asked if there was any plan to add a dark theme to Instagram Lite, the team mentioned that they are already working on it and expect to hear more about it in the coming months.
Instagram Lite is only available on Android devices. The company has no plans to release an iOS equivalent, as the number of people using iOS devices in emerging markets is quite low to warrant a separate app.