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Instagram Lite launches on Google Play, offers slimmed-down option

The smaller app is tailored for emerging markets.

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Instagram Lite appeared on the Google Play store on Wednesday.

Instagram/Screenshot by CNET

Instagram Lite launched on the Google Play Store without announcement Wednesday, offering users a cut-down version of the photosharing app.

The Lite app is just 573KB, compared to the regular Instagram's 32MB.

Users can post photos, add filters, view stories and use the Explore tab. The ability to message friends and share videos will be added later, the Google Play store description says.

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"We are testing a new version of Instagram for Android that takes up less space on your device, uses less data, and starts faster," an Instagram spokesperson said in a statement.

Testing of the Lite version began in Mexico this week, and the company hopes to bring it to more countries later this year.

The app seems geared toward emerging markets, where internet connections are often slower.

On Tuesday, Instagram was estimated to be worth more than $100 billion, and it's expected to exceed 2 billion monthly users in the next five years. The company also just rolled out its own four-way group video chat that lets users browse Instagram as they talk.

First published June 28 at 2:54 p.m. PT.
Updated at 9:18 a.m. PT: Added statement from Instagram.