Telegram with new web versions, payments improvements and scheduled voice chats and

Martin Brinkmann
Apr 27, 2021
Apps, Internet, Mobile Computing

Telegram is a popular messaging solution that is used by millions of users worldwide. The developers of Telegram published an update that brings massive improvements to users, group administrators, and also merchants on the platform.

Android users who use Telegram may download the latest version from the official website to get updates faster, including this new update. The Google Play Store version will update eventually as well. The direct download version supports automatic updates and will install "new versions several days or weeks faster" than the Google Play Store version.

If you use Telegram's web version, you now have access to two new web versions with updated functionality. Both support new features of Telegram's mobile apps, such as dark mode, animated stickers or chat folders, that they did not support before.

Telegram calls the two new web interfaces Web K and Web Z. Telegram is tight lipped when it comes to the differences between the two versions; a quick test showed only visual differences between the two versions.

telegram web interface

Login requires a verification code that is sent to the Telegram application on a mobile device.

Payments improved significantly

Telegram introduced support for payments in 2017 on the platform. Users of the chat app could communicate with payment bots to make payments from within the application.

Today's update introduces support for eight third-party payment providers, including Stripe, that merchants can make use of to handle payments on the Telegram platform.

Telegram notes that it does not take commissions and does not store payment information on its platform.

Information such as credit cards data is sent to the payment provider directly and shipping information is shared with the merchant.

All merchants can start using the Payments API directly. A Payments help page is available for developers that provides instructions on setting this up.

Voice Chat Improvements

Administrators of groups and channels may schedule voice chats in the latest version instead of having to create one on the fly. The main advantage of that is that members of the chat or channel get advance notice of new voice chats.

Chats displays a countdown at the top when a voice chat is scheduled, and users may enable notifications to receive a ping when the chat is about to start.

Admins can schedule a Voice Chat from their Group or Channel's profile page. On Android, tap â‹® > Start Voice chat > Schedule Voice Chat. On iOS, tap the Voice Chat button and select Schedule Voice Chat.

Don't worry, the chat won't start automatically when the countdown reaches zero – only when an admin presses the Start Now button.

Another new voice chat related feature is the option to display mini profiles; these expand profile pictures and biographies, without leaving voice chat.

Last but not least, administrators may record voice chats to publish them for followers who missed the event or want to replay it.

Other improvements of the new version

Photos and videos can be expanded from chat right away now using pinch to zoom, and without having to tap to open the media viewer.

The video player supports jumping forward or backward in the latest version. Android users double-tap on the left or right side of the screen to jump 10 seconds back or forward, iOS users press and hold the + or + buttons to jump 15 seconds back or forward.

Closing Words

I'm using Telegram mostly for keeping up with channels that moved from WhatsApp to Telegram. The new voice chat schedule feature is a welcome addition, and the new payment options should improve the popularity of making payments on Telegram.

Now You: do you use Telegram or another chat app?

Telegram with new web versions, payments improvements and scheduled voice chats and
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Telegram with new web versions, payments improvements and scheduled voice chats and
A big Telegram update improved the messaging service's web client, payments on the platform, voice chats, and more.
Ghacks Technology News

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  1. Ivan said on April 28, 2021 at 9:05 am

    How do you guys feel about telegram bots?
    These are running on individual’s computers and you have no clue who owns a bot and what it does with the content you pass it.

  2. David said on April 27, 2021 at 7:02 pm

    I found Telegram’s security to be lacking and moved to Signal. And now that it has become a preferred messenger app of the American Far Right, actually encouraged by the developers, I have no plans to ever use it again.

    1. Anonymous said on April 28, 2021 at 1:13 am

      Signal is bloated garbage. Telegram is much more lightweight and has ton of unique features.

    2. My letter to @David said on April 27, 2021 at 9:48 pm

      Lacking security about what? Can you provide any evidence or you say and ‘think’ so because you read it in some BuzzFeed article or wired or gizmodo or CNN or TYT or any other garbage “news” (more like propaganda) page about it and about how “insecure Telegram is” while not even understand what Telegram is about or why it is becoming popular among EVERYONE, not just the fairy tale you mentioned?

      Because I mean, it is cute you even mention “American Far Right” fairy tale boogieman that only lives in some propaganda machines that try to manipulate weak people, that are gullible enough to believe a lie like that, especially when we talk about more than 500million users telegram has.

      But Talking about Signal and your supposedly almighty super secured and private app that you love so much.
      Are you going to tell me you trust more an app that was funded by US government and has connections like that like Moxie has, and you are going to tell me Telegram is less secured? Have you ever researched the connections Signal and that Moxie has with anyone in silicon valley and the US government?
      What about the Huawei engineers saying Signal Protocol is a CIA backdoor? Have you researched that or you just ignore it? What about the flawed Proxy feature they released that put people in danger? I mean, some people of the ‘anti-censorship community’ raised the issue on github and signal forums and they got dismissed and censored and banned by signal and Moxie, the only respond I read by Moxie was “we will do it better next time” like if the damage they could do or they did by their bad implementation was going to be fixed by words of hope.
      You are going to say that’s more secured and private than Telegram?

      Can you tell me if Signal finally updated or released the updated server source code? last time I checked it was 11 months and 10 days without any update… It is obvious that in a year they had to update it but somehow didn’t happen, I mean, logically even if they released the code you can’t even be sure that your data is stored in a server having the same code they post on Github, but apparently you are going to say that their server code not being updated in over a year is a good and positive thing?

      I mean, there is the drama between Moxie and Cellebrite has taken precedence over the removal of phone numbers which they promised (but I doubt it will happen) or proper proxy implementation and the server source code issue which he has reminded silent about it anyway, many things that they could do, but hey… distraction and smoke screens are useful when so many controversies surround the CEO and the App.

      Soo many things and you still think Telegram is the problem here? and it is the one lacking security and privacy?

      Oh yeah I forgot… it is not about the Security and the privacy itself, it is about the boogieman fairy tale you believe that exists, just like some people believe in Santa Claus, you believe “American Far Right” thus you can’t use Telegram and build some spaghetti logic to justify not using it while supposedly talk about security and privacy, even if Telegram has never been around controversies like what happens with Signal every single second, red flags don’t matter when boogie-far right-man is around.

      The only thing Signal supposedly does better than Telegram is the E2EE everywhere and by default statement… but, can you even trust that? if End-to-End Encryption is the way it is, how are you sure Signal is not doing the whatsapp way of saying they offer the same while using google drive as a backup without any encryption in your messages? This is the reason Telegram doesn’t offer Secret Chats on by default, Telegram wanted a secured web synched messenger that worked on any device, had apps that people can build and you can get your messages without problem if you wanted. E2EE wouldn’t allow that ever, so how secured are these apps where you get a message in one device and then somehow it appears in another device like the PC app you set up, I mean, have you ever questioned… how secured it is? or you just believe it because you read E2EE and that’s it?
      I mean, I have to ask, do you know what E2EE is?
      Because I know in 2021 it is mostly a marketing buzzword using by companies to make others fall and pretend they are “safer” while people don’t even understand how it works, so Telegram not offering it by default doesn’t mean it is less private or secured, it just different which can be decided by the users what they want to do.

      It seems you say you trust more an app that ONLY lets you communicate with people by giving your phone number to others, while you say Telegram is less secured and private even if you can set up a username and never reveal your phone number to strangers.
      So can you enlighten us and tell us how is Signal any better? especially when you have to trust either company with your information? Of course like I said, at least Telegram hasn’t had any controversies surrounding them like that, but then people hide those Signal issues with some “we recommend it” marketing stuff, which is interesting when that Moxie has so many silicon valley connections… pretty suspicious if you ask me.

      And just so you know, since you believe in the fairy tale boogieman of Far Right, the reason Telegram has became popular is because it offers unlimited member channels (and now groups) and groups which will work for 200k users, so people can build communities without having to deal with twitter or facebook or google or amazon any other pro-censorship silicon valley company, now it offers audio calls for channels which they call the re-newed radio of the 21st century feature and they promised the tv station mode as well later this year, which would be huge, it also lets you transfer files up to 2gb and there is people who proudly say “I have stored in Telegram cloud 200gb” which means, they don’t need to trust Google or Microsoft or even deal with “limits” imposed by Mega or whatever cloud drive company unless you pay, so there are many reason why people use telegram for good things and what people would say bad things like pirating movies and all that, but it’s not like Telegram is wild wild west since many groups and channels get banned for pornography and all that, but obviously the “risks” of having apps that promote more freedom than others is that unless it is public (channels or groups) nobody will know they exist, and good and bad things will happen.
      Of course you can still believe Telegram has 500 million far right people on it or the buzzfeed story how “they are coding their own language to recruit blabla”, you can be as smart or not so smart as you want because apparently that “far right” fairy tale only lives in the heads of some internet users that try to stay relevant when selling ‘news’ and their clickbait business or trying to pretend the world absolute numbers and nothing else should exist outside their little bubble and everyone should be just a lemming because freedom is dangerous and it is horrible the reality that the world will never be the way we all want.

      I really doubt you have any argument to back up your claim and you only use the lemmingish mentality about how far right blabla to justify your usage of Signal even with all the red flags around it.
      And don’t get me wrong, it is find if you want to use Facebook messenger, Whatsapp, Signal or whatever, but sounds kind of dishonest when you supposedly talk about privacy and security and then publicly link your excuse to dismiss telegram by using the lie and pretty much a propaganda buzzword(s) as an argument against it.
      I mean, your logic makes little to no sense because are you going to stop using internet because “bad people I don’t agree with also use internet” or your car or drinking water or eating food or even breathing because what you call “bad people”, which doesn’t mean they are bad or they even exists, like in the case of your supposedly existence of Far Right blabla EVERYWHERE like people like you try to make it seem, it is what you want to think it is ‘bad’, your reality or internet reality which is far from the real stuff people live in the world and only because you and other got manipulated to believed so it doesn’t make it true or bigger than it is etc etc.

      But I mean to be honest I really don’t care your relativeness or mentality and what you believe is right or wrong, like, I would trust less someone like you on the internet about the reality of the world since it seems you believe in the Santa Claus of 2021, but whatever reality you believe to be real or not, it doesn’t change the many red flags around Signal and how it doesn’t explain how your argument “Telegram is less secured and private” without providing any evidence besides “I think” is any valid only because in your imagination and your buzzfeed articles or what you were told about Far Right or elves and whatever fits your agenda and narrative and excuses, use Telegram.

      1. Anonymous said on April 28, 2021 at 12:20 pm

        > Signal Protocol is a CIA backdoor

        Why should the far right feel threatened by that ? The CIA is the main reason why the far right is so prosperous today, and still their main employer. But sure they love to feel like they’re oppressed victims, that’s part of their mythomania package.

      2. David said on April 28, 2021 at 2:39 am

        don’t feed the trolls

  3. Wired Happiness said on April 27, 2021 at 11:50 am

    Login with phonenumber..yeah right. I use WIRE that allows me to log in using any throwaway wooptidoo email address I can imagine and doesn’t care about my contacts either. Oh, and it’s a million times better than Telegram in every sense as well. Been using it for years and have zero complaints.
    I guess we all have to wait for Elon Musk to discover WIRE until you all will agree with me..

    1. Ransom Belin said on April 27, 2021 at 7:38 pm

      LOL okay dude… or more like fanboy.
      First, Wire is a paid app, so how many of your family members and contacts you convinced to pay for it MONTHLY and how many didn’t opt for that?
      Imagine paying for an app like this monthly and then pretend you are better than others because you are doing it, how can you be sure the encryption and all the supposedly features are even well implemented? How do you even know their servers are more secured than Telegram’s ones? or if they are helping the government or not? I mean, they are from Switzerland… I wouldn’t trust them at all, unlike some delusional people who pretends US government is the only one you have to worry about.

      And what has Elon Musk have to do with anything? Elon hasn’t even talked about Telegram, he only endorsed Signal, just like other “big people” like Dorsey, who wants to get rid of most people on the internet but somehow endorses a super encrypted app that will make them stronger? But yeah, some people ignore the fact that signal was funded by US government and CIA and others, even Huawei engineers said Moxie was paid to have backdoors in Signal’s protocol, etc etc. So don’t tell me “Wire can be different” or even Telegram.

      what I mean is “your zero complaints” mean nothing in the real world, it doesn’t mean by paying for an app you will get more privacy or security or anonymity, or your information is not shared or it can’t be traced back at you. Email can be traced at you even if you pretend “oh I used a disposal email” or do you think IPs and other data isn’t recorded? What about the metadata, what about the messages, are they truly being deleted when you hit the delete button?
      And even if Telegram needs your phone number and all that, which is one of the negatives but understandable issues, you still can set up a username and never give your phone to anyone which is more than what you can do with other messengers, plus we can mention how they also let you have more than 1 account in a device so you can switch and not being tied like happens with other messengers

      But then you sound like a delusional fanboy, probably a bot promoting wire or an employee because to be honest, I doubt you have either used Telegram or see the benefits of Telegram offers for free thanks to the money Pavel Durov has.
      Some people complain about how Secret Chats is not on by default, but the goal of Telegram is being a cloud messenger unless people choose not to, everything is about cloud and making it secure enough for anyone to stay on the internet without so much dictatorship from Big Tech.

      For example, Telegram released an android app in their website different from the one you get in google Play Store, because somehow Google found a way to block some channels and group from displaying, they found a way to ban content inside apps that way. Why would Telegram release a separated app? most companies wouldn’t care but they somehow did. I am not saying “trust them” but at least their actions and the official story how Telegram is the way it is seems mostly legit.
      And I am also talking how bad press Telegram gets, it’s not only people using Telegram but the company itself being attacked for not totally bending the arm to the pressure of the Big Tech. Has Wire done it? no, and one reason was my first point, not many use it, it is mostly aimed to Enterprise to be honest because they know most people aren’t going to look at it and say “oh I will totally pay for it” anyway. So congratulations because you convinced your family and friends to pay subscription, where once they stop paying, no more staying in touch with others but not everyone will be able to do that.

      Of course, even if I use Telegram, the truth is I am still waiting for Session app to grow and offer the video calls for me to completely switch to it, I am sure they will achieve that eventually.
      But Session is the ONLY app that doesn’t have a weird shady story behind it, it is the only one that would offer truly anonymity and security. Of course they work around the Oxen crypto and about the service nodes and onion routing, which it is mostly positive but it is not a “philanthropist” action, I mean, like if those philanthropist really existed anyway but that’s not the point, the point is how they expect to get money for their work. But it seems they are one of the few companies that offer and will offer pro-user features and will try to help users battle against Big Tech and Government surveillance, etc etc.
      But let’s not hide the fact that even Session Open Groups, need a server run by someone where some stuff is stored so it is not as secure as private groups and 1 to 1 conversations, so not everything will be perfect on any app, but I like what Oxen is offering with Session and Lokinet.

      We can also talk about others like Jami and Tox, and many other services that offer P2P but they can’t be recommended because P2P is not good for a lot of things and IP can be easily seen unless you use VPN which means trusting another company, etc etc. But for family members and friends Jami is great, and they promised sync conversations through the Git protocol, so it might help adoption and how it works, but the P2P IP problem will never go away, which is a reason not to use it with strangers.

      Anyway, the point of my message is to say: don’t be a fanboy and I am sure your beloved Wire (if you are not being paid to promote it) shouldn’t be trusted, and only because you can use some disposal email and you are paying for it, doesn’t mean it is great in anyway because you can’t trust anyone anymore, if your information is in a server out of your control, then… how can you trust it anyway? Reason why decentralized P2P apps Jami and Tox and semi-decentralized apps like Session are the real thing, of course I can only see a bright future with Session because of the anonymity and safeness from the evil of the world when it comes to Governments and Big tech and stuff like that, but Telegram seems to be doing a great job and your Wire fanboyness and your “years of usage” and your “zero complaints” aren’t anyway near the real life experience of most people, people who get banned, people who get silenced, people who get prosecuted, people who try to find apps to stop surveillance and all this abuse by big companies and most governments who want to control everything (mostly allowed by humans so they are the ones to blame).
      You sound like those ones living in a world sitting on a chair and pretending fighting over “what apps is better” is what matters, but you don’t see the real world scenario, the real stories of people, the ones who want some freedom, and to be honest, for now? Only Telegram has been able to deliver that in a decent way and fight for it, like I said, the fight against Google by offering an external APK different from the one in google play is a good step.

      But Good Luck, I hope the money you have given to Wire month to month is really protecting you and people around you and hope it is making the internet better outside the little bubble of your life and your experience.

      1. Wired Happiness said on April 28, 2021 at 5:20 am

        Wire is free. Go away.

    2. anonymous said on April 27, 2021 at 6:49 pm

      «As of late 2019, Wire is owned by a US company, which makes it “not entirely clear how much jurisdiction the United States will have over Wire data”. This is especially problematic, as Wire stores unencrypted meta data for every user. Wire also changed its privacy policy from “sharing user data when required by law” to “sharing user data when necessary”. It remains unclear what is considered “necessary”. This very vague language means that sharing user data could very well be “necessary” to increase profits, or “necessary” for law enforcement, or any other reason.»

  4. ShintoPlasm said on April 27, 2021 at 10:22 am

    I’ve been using Telegram almost from the very beginning. It’s the best thing that’s happened to my phone(s).

  5. owl said on April 27, 2021 at 9:51 am

    I’m concerned about web-based social networking services, so I’m sticking with the old methods (letters and face-to-face conversations). That’s why I don’t use Telegram or chat apps, but since @Yuliya recommended Telegram in the topic below, I looked it up on Wikipedia and other sources and have a good feeling about Telegram.
    I’m thinking of using Telegram if the need for those tools arises.
    Find out if your email and phone number were in Facebook’s latest data breach | gHacks Tech News

    Telegram (software) | Wikipedia

    1. Anonymous said on April 28, 2021 at 1:37 am

      You don’t choose messaging services, messaging services choose you.
      You’re not using it alone, you just use what your friends use

  6. Pierre said on April 27, 2021 at 7:12 am

    The appli is very good but no one uses it. I uninstalled it

    1. ShintoPlasm said on April 27, 2021 at 10:24 am

      I think it depends on which country you’re in. There’s quite a shift in the UK away from WhatsApp, lots of my contacts have installed Telegram recently. Other countries are also experiencing this – and of course it’s been pretty big in Russia.

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