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News18 launches Google Progressive Web Apps in Hindi and Bengali

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MUMBAI: News18, India’s leading destination for news with more than 100 million active viewers per month, has worked with the Google team in India to launch Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) in Hindi and Bengali. For the uninitiated, PWAs are unique Google products that combine the best qualities of apps and websites. So while consumers may be on the https://hindi.news18.com website on their smartphones, via the Google Chrome browser, the website will have the look, feel and functionality of an app. PWAs are much lighter than other apps, they load much faster, consume much less data and storage and are therefore accessible to wider audiences.

News18 offers content in nine regional languages, in addition to English and Hindi, in order to cater to the diverse Indian audience. “With the exponential growth that the Indian market has seen in content consumption and engagement on mobile, it is important that our products deliver our experiences to every relevant user. Given the accessibility that our multi-lingual coverage offers, our technology is now aligned to the same vision of democratising access to news,” said Mitul Sangani, Business Head, News18 Languages.

With 80% of News18’s audiences accessing the information on their smartphones, these state-of-the-art PWAs ensure speed of access and reliability under poor network conditions and enhance user engagement. Network18’s Chief Product Officer Avinash Mudaliar confirms that the Hindi PWA, which was released first, has driven significant improvements in performance and consumer behaviour. He said, “Better load times have enabled us to provide a superior user experience. The proof is in the numbers. Users are spending more time on our pages, and engaging more with our content.”

PWAs also offer the ability for users to subscribe to the publisher’s push notifications. Over 3 lakh users have subscribed to News18 Hindi’s push notifications since it was launched.

Manish Maheshwari, Network18 Digital CEO said, “Progressive web applications have shown a lot of potential in improving access to quality content in the Indian market. Network18 Digital is one of the largest digital publishers in India, with over two dozen properties across formats in all major Indian languages. Given the success of the News18 Hindi PWA, we rolled out another one in Bengali and will be rolling out more of our other properties in the months to come.”

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