Telegram: The Alternative Messenger App Now the Choice of 200M Users

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Among the popular messaging apps, reaching 200M users may be nothing to crow about but it a singular achievement for Telegram because unlike the other top apps, it has never advertised. Two years ago Telegram had 100M users, sent out 15B messages daily, and added 350k new users every day. This phenomenal but organic growth was made possible because of the high level of trust – existing users who loved the app on mobile (Android, iOs) or desktop invited others because they believed in its speed, robustness, and safety. Last week, this growth went into overdrive when the crash of WhatsApp servers resulted in a spike of downloads estimated to have added between 5-8 million new users – all within a span of 24 hours.

What is Telegram and how different is it from other messaging apps? Like the most popular messaging apps, Telegram is cloud-based and has mobile and desktop (Windows, Mac, Linux) versions. With a native app for every platform, it’s easy to access from multiple devices. Telegram has multiple servers worldwide and this redundancy means that your heavily encrypted messages are safely delivered – probably faster than when using competing apps.

More of anything a messaging app can do is possible with Telegram. Telegram is amazingly powerful and does not put a cap on the size of messages, media, and chat. You can even manage groups up to 100,000 members, coordinate chats across various devices, connect in and to remote locations, video stream, and send any type of personal or business documents that can be encrypted. Though the capability of storing information in the cloud is not unique, the ability get feedback from clients and to build your own messaging app using free and open Telegram API. What’s not to like especially when it is forever free with no ads, no subscription fees and with the ability to self-destruct messages?

Using Telegram requires a SIM but since 2014, it’s now possible for you to change the number the Telegram account is linked to. Telegram features 2-way opt-in to prevent unwelcome messages from strangers or those you know but would rather not connect with. Most importantly, it prevents you from hacker attacks. One of its best features

Although all leading apps like Facebook and WhatsApp announce that their users will always be the top priority, only Telegram can truly claim that there is no conflict of interest because it doesn’t have “shareholders, advertisers, marketers, data miners or government agencies” to worry about. Thus, there is no impetus to monetize by selling and disclosing data to other parties or to compromise on account of the advertisers.

Privacy, data encryption, and speed have been highly valued since Day 1. According to Pavel Durov, founder,” Since the day we launched in August 2013 we haven’t disclosed a single byte of our users’ private data to third parties.” It evolves daily by improving functionality – faster, easier to use, and smoother animations. Valued at $5B, it is definitely not for sale and will never be beholden to governments or be pressured into divulging encryption keys even at the risk of being blocked.

Telegram is an idea; it is the idea that everyone on this planet has a right to be free …trusted with freedom to share their thoughts, freedom to communicate privately, freedom to create tools . — Pavel Durov, Founder

Graphics courtesy of Telegram