‘Twitter Lite’ Launches Worldwide, Targets Emerging Markets

Micro-blogging platform and social media giant Twitter is rolling out a quicker and lighter version of its main website today in a bid to draw more traffic from regions cursed with sporadic or patchy mobile data networks.

The mobile-friendly app, which launches worldwide today, takes up less than 1MB of space on a device and features up to 30 percent faster launch times and faster navigation, according to Twitter.

The new service was announced on Twitter’s blog today by product manager Patrick Traughber.

“Twitter Lite provides the key features of Twitter – your timeline, Tweets, Direct Messages, trends, profiles, media uploads, notifications, and more,” he wrote. “With Twitter Lite, we are making Twitter more accessible to millions of people – all you need is a smartphone or tablet with a browser.”

Twitter Lite can be accessed via the web (it’s more of a web app than anything) at mobile.twitter.com. Once there, you’ll still be able to access DMs, your timeline, trending items, your profile, media, and even get notifications. You could also save the web app to your home screen as a shortcut if you want.

According to the GSMA, almost half of the world’s population is still on 2G connectivity, despite the fact that nearly 4 billion people now have smartphones.

For this reason, companies like Facebook have begun offering alternate versions of their platform through initiatives like Internet.org that slims down some of the more data-consuming features in favour of a more streamlined option.