Facebook adds video chat to Messenger Lite, its pared-down Android app


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After bringing its pared-down Android app Messenger Lite to mature markets just like the US and UK final autumn, Fb is increasing its options to ramp up engagement. Right now, the corporate introduced that it’s including video chat into the combo.

Messenger Lite, first launched in 2015 was initially a part of an effort from Fb to construct extra apps to spice up utilization in growing nations, the place cell utilization is extra pricey and persons are extra probably to make use of extra lower-end Android units.

Messenger Lite is in over 100 nations at present, and whereas it’s not almost as widespread as primary Messenger within the US, it stays a preferred app in lots of much less mature markets, as of at present firmly within the high 10 app rankings, and positively within the high 25 of dozens of smaller nations, based on stats from AppAnnie.

SensorTower, in the meantime, estimates that the app has greater than 100 million installs worldwide up to now, primarily in India, Brazil, and Indonesia. The later growth to mature markets was an acknowledgement that, in reality, these growing market shoppers aren’t the one ones who need, want, and use much less bloated apps. The app is available in at below 10MB, that means it installs shortly and customarily makes use of much less bandwidth to function.

As with the common model of messenger, utilizing video chat in Messenger is a fast step away from the principle display screen. In an current or new dialog, or throughout an audio name, you simply faucet the video icon within the nook (in messaging) or in the course of the display screen (in a name) to change to video.

Initially launched with a deal with Messenger’s core options — textual content messaging, picture and hyperlink sharing and stickers — at present’s launch of video chat is an indication of two issues. The primary development right here is that Lite customers are beginning to transfer onto (and anticipate) extra superior companies.

“Video chats are an anticipated and important a part of on a regular basis communication in at present’s messaging expertise,” Fb notes. “Chatting face-to-face stay is ideal for these moments while you need to see and listen to the voices of individuals you care about most – whether or not you’re wishing somebody a contented birthday, you might have some nice information to share, otherwise you spontaneously need to atone for the day.”

However other than performance for customers, it’s good enterprise for Fb. Video chat has been one of many greater rocketships inside its core Messenger app, with Fb clocking 17 billion video chats on it in 2017, double the yr earlier than.

The second development of notice right here is that expertise is transferring alongside, and delivering cost-effective streamed video companies to cell shoppers is changing into simpler and simpler. Fb’s infrastructure efforts are one instance of how the social community is instantly making efforts to carry that about, and likewise of the way it’s benefitting from that work, if circuitously monetising it by offering cell community IP and different assist to carriers.

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