The social media giant Facebook has announced that its Instant Articles service is now available for Indian Android and iOS users as well. However, the service will be initially available to some users only, which will be later rolled out for everyone.
As publisher partners, the firm has joined hands with The Indian Express, India Today, AajTak, Hindustan Times and The Quint.
“We at Facebook are really excited to be rolling out Instant Articles in India on Monday. We are working with a publisher ecosystem that is varied and we are excited to see how this product will resonate with Facebook users and publishers in India,” Facebook’s director, news and global media partnerships, Andy Mitchell said.
India is the third region across the world where the social giant has rolled out its service, previously it has introduced the Instant Articles service in the United States and Western Europe for iOS only.
Facebook claims that by using Instant Articles service, articles on the app load 10 times faster than the mobile web by pre-loading them during user scrolls down the News Feed. As the article is being loaded in background, it pops up instantly within the app when the user taps a link, and embedded videos start playing the moment by scrolling down to them. It says that on an average it takes 8 seconds for a news article to load on its standard mobile app.
This means that you can load stories much more quickly, without having to leave the Facebook app at all. It will allow the users to quickly get to the content they want and enables the publishers to display media-rich content easily, and to cache content so that articles open in moments, even on 2G networks.
It seems that the company has rolled out the service in India because India is a major marketplace for Facebook. The CEO Zuckerberg revealed during its India visit that with 130 million users, India is the second largest market for the company, outside the US.