Uber launches Uber Lite, a 5MB app for India

  • Uber launches Uber Lite, a 5MB app for India

Uber launches Uber Lite, a 5MB app for India

Sure, an application developer could code something that performs well on all imaginable hardware, but then they have to cut back on features, which in turn can degrade the overall user experience of a product or service.

Uber has been working on spreading its presence to these new and emerging markets and has found that slow performance of their application has caused many to look elsewhere.

The app is now part of pilot scheme in India, the country where it was built, but should be available in more markets later in the year.

Consequently, the company has announced Uber Lite, a new app that does away with a lot of the visual eye candy and makes way for a simpler interface that it claims would serve to summon cabs quickly even with limited connectivity, in 2G networks to boot. Top destinations are cached so still set up a trip even when you're offline or the connection is spotty.

The Uber Lite app will be less than 5 MB and will be supported on Android 4.1 and above.

If you don't have space for the Uber app on your phone, a slimmed-down new app could be the answer.

Uber says the Lite version of the app will work on any Android phone and on any network, as well as taking up the equivalent of three selfies in space. It guides users through the request experience (as shown in the GIF below) by detecting a user's location, reducing the need to type.

Additionally, the app stores the city's top places so that even when you are offline, no network is needed for them to appear. And coming soon, a progress bar helps users follow the driver's progress should you opt to not load the map.

Uber Lite is now being trialed in India, which is likely to be its most popular market, and more features such as language selection and offline requesting are coming soon. In order to try out the app before it sees a public release, you can register here, though there's no word as of now on an exact date of release for it. Enter your email to be subscribed to our newsletter.