Two days ago, Flipkart had given in to the rising opposition to its app-only policy and relaunched its mobile site. The new version of the site, called Flipkart Lite, allows users who don’t have the Flipkart app on their phone to still use the company’s services. The site had instantly won acclaim from users for its minimalistic interface and its superior load speeds (some users had claimed that the site worked faster than Flipkart’s app).
Cut to a day later, and Flipkart’s homegrown rival Snapdeal has also launched a lighter version of its mobile site. Rather unimaginatively called Snap-Lite, the site claims to be 85% faster, and works across all mobile browsers. Flipkart’s new site, on the other hand, works only with Chrome.
— Anand Chandrasekaran (@anandc) November 12, 2015
Snapdeal has always maintained that it plans to retain all versions of its site, including the desktop and the mobile versions. Its CEO, Kunal Bahl, was openly scornful of Flipkart’s app-only plans, dubbing it “the most consumer unfriendly idea.” Flipkart now seems to have ditched its app-only strategy, and after launching its lightweight mobile site, is threatening to steal a march over its rivals.
This is a quick response by Snapdeal, but Flipkart’s won this round.