Google has launched a Lite version of its popular search app. Users of the app will be able to customize their user menu and save pages offline. This follows on the back of a similar lite version of the Youtube app that was launched in September 2016.
Why the move
Google is targeting consumers in emerging markets where data is more expensive, and network quality is also lower. Analysts at the GSM Association have forecast that emerging markets such as China and India will account for 9 out of 10 new mobile users between now and 2020.
Technology companies have of recent intensified their focus on emerging markets. Google CEO recently visited Nigeria, where he announced plans for the company to train 10 million Africans. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg also paid a visit to the country in August last year.
A reduction in data consumption and faster loading times will increase the frequency an app is used. This indirectly increases ad and revenue per user. This enables the company to stay ahead of its competitors such as Microsoft and Facebook in the battle for ad space. Social network Twitter had in April this year, launched a lite verison of its app.
Founded in 1998 by Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Google specializes in internet related services and products. In August 2015, Google decided to form Alphabet as a holding company for all its interests. The company made revenues of $89.5 billion in 2016.