Fast-Loading Instant Articles Arrive on Facebook Messenger

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We're living in a high-speed world. So you shouldn't be bogged down by slow-loading news.

Facebook this week launched Instant Articles for Messenger, promising quick access to links shared on the chat platform. It will launch on Android first before rolling out to iOS at a later date.

"When you tap on an Instant Article link in Facebook, it loads up to 10 times faster than a standard mobile Web article, so it was important to make sure everyone on Messenger could have the same great reading experience," Josh Roberts, product manager, said in statement.

Those communicating via Messenger will notice a lightning bolt over the top-right corner of some links shared in the app, which denote Instant Articles.

The feature first rolled out to mobile Facebook users in May 2015 with support from The New York Times, BuzzFeed, National Geographic, NBC, and The Atlantic, as well as The Guardian, BBC News, Spiegel, and Bild. Articles from participating publishers are turned into an "HTML5 document optimized for fast mobile performance," according to Facebook, so they'll load faster than a link posted to Facebook by the publisher themselves.

"Every month, more than 900 million people around the world communicate with friends, family members and businesses on Messenger, and that includes sharing informative and entertaining content from websites," Roberts said.

Currently, links shared via Messenger load in a mobile browser, which can be a slow process, especially in areas with low connectivity. "Now people can have the same fast, interactive experience reading Instant Articles in Messenger that they have in the Facebook app," Rogers added.

Instant Articles also support zooming into high-res photos by tilting your phone and watching videos automatically play as you scroll through an article, as well as interactive maps, audio captions, and the ability to like and comment on individual parts of an article.

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