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Facebook slims down for developing countries

In Russia, bandwidth eats you

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Facebook today launched a low bandwidth version of its site, for users on slow connections.

Facebook Lite, currently on trial in Russia and India, is billed as a "faster, simpler version similar to the Facebook experience you get on a mobile phone".

It includes the basic communication and photo-sharing functions of the usual site, but excludes bandwith-hungry adornments such as apps and video.

"We are currently testing Facebook Lite in countries where we are seeing lots of new users coming to Facebook for the first time, and are looking to start off with a more simple experience," Facebook said.

As well as being more accessible where 2G mobile and dial-up internet dominate, the launch makes financial sense for the site, which remains Profit Lite. Users in developing countries draw even less per head in advertising revenue than their Western counterparts, who themselves do not cover Facebook's ever-rising bandwidth and storage bill. ®

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