Microsoft is rolling out an updated version of Skype for Android, one that’s optimized for devices running older versions of the OS, providing better audio and video quality for lower-end devices.
The new update will optimize the app for Android devices running versions 4.0.3 to 5.1. Microsoft says that this version “is lighter on both disk and memory consumption,” and that it’ll provide better audio and video for those devices, in addition to better performance when the connection isn’t so hot. The update will be rolled out worldwide in the coming weeks.
The approach looks a bit like what Google is doing withAndroid Go, a stripped down version of Android that doesn’t require as much processing power, RAM, or storage. They’re phones designed to work in areas with limited internet connectivity, and they come with apps that are designed to operate on such limited specs.
This isn’t the first communications app to go this route: Facebook rolled out Messenger Lite for Android last October, which cuts some of the clutter from the regular app, while Twitter introduced a lite version of its mobile site that uses less data in September. The emphasis on apps and sites that require less data and performance power is useful around the world, especially in places where the latest models of phones either aren’t available or affordable.