Facebook said Wednesday that Facebook Lite, a lightweight version of the regular Facebook app for mobile phones, has doubled its number of users in less than a year and now serves more than 200 million monthly active users globally. Development of Facebook Lite is being led by the company’s engineering office in Israel.

The app now supports 55 languages and is popular in many countries including Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico, and the Philippines, the US social media giant said in a statement.

Facebook Lite was developed for users in areas with slow internet connections, or with low-end devices or limited internet packages. The software uses less data, installs fast, loads quickly and works on all types of Androids, supporting all networks including 2G, the statement said.

The company said it was launching the app on Tuesday in four additional countries: Israel, Italy, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates, and that additional launches are in the pipeline.

Illustration of the Facebook Lite app (Courtesy)

Illustration of the Facebook Lite app (Courtesy)

During the past year, the app’s development team in Tel Aviv, which includes 40 engineers and product managers, further enhanced Facebook Lite by improving the performance for a faster and more reliable experience; the look and feel to make sure people have a simple and good experience; and the onboarding process so people can easily log on and off their account when sharing a device, a common case in emerging markets, Facebook said.

More than 100 people make up the team at Facebook’s Engineering Office in Israel, the statement said.