The purpose of having “lite” versions of apps is so mobile users can install lite versions of the apps on their device that may have low memory or storage space. Mozilla released Firefox Lite back in 2018 for this very purpose but as they kept adding features, it became too bloated and issues started cropping up. They have now announced that they are ending development and support for the browser since the new Firefox app makes the Lite version redundant.
Firefox Lite actually started back in 2017 under the name Firefox Rocket and was designed specifically for the Indonesian market. But a year later, they changed it to Firefox Lite so it can be self-explanatory as it was a browser that was supposed to run fast but using minimal data usage. However, years later, it has become a pretty bloated app with new features that users weren’t really clamoring for. Worse, it started adding ads in the notifications and the New Tab page.
Mozilla has said that as of June 30, 2021, they will no longer be developing and supporting the browser. Users will still be able to use it as their browser if they want to for some reason but you won’t get any more updates. And if you deleted it previously and wanted to re-install it, you can’t do it using the Google Play Store. There are some APKs out there so if you really wanted to, you could still install it.
The official reason for this move is that the new Firefox app is already fast enough anyway and so Firefox Lite is basically redundant. Of course they will not admit that the actual reason is that Lite isn’t really that light anymore and that it is not fulfilling its original purpose anyway. Still, it reached 5 million downloads over the years so it has most likely served users that were looking for a lite browser, until it wasn’t.
If you were a Firefox Lite user, maybe now is the time to switch to the full browser. You can download it from the Google Play Store for free or through the APK Mirror.