Telegram will soon have ads, premium features, founder reveals
Telegram, the popular messaging app that has proven to be a viable alternative to WhatsApp and that has remained ad-free since inception will soon be seeing ads. The decision to open up Telegram’s 500 odd million users to ads was revealed by the founder of Telegram, Pavel Durov in a lengthy blog post.
In the blog post which was also beamed to thousands of Telegram users, Pavel looks back on the development of the app and also talks about what the future plans for are for Telegram. He also uses the post to justify the reasoning behind introducing the once-shunned a-word.
Durov goes on to reassure existing Telegram users that in spite of opening itself to ads, these will be implemented in a completely unobtrusive manner. He also places special focus on the fact that Telegram will continue to remain an independent entity – quite unlike WhatsApp which was acquired by Facebook a few years ago for a massive sum of $19 billion.
He also uses the blog post to reveal why Telegram had no other choice but to open itself up to ads so that they can continue to bear the cost of running the massive operation which currently has a userbase of over 500 million people worldwide.
To those who now fear ad banners in chat windows or group messages, Durov explicitly points out that communication between people will remain ad-free and that there will be no display of apps in direct messages and groups. Instead, Telegram will focus on an area of its app that has been gaining in popularity of late – social networking.
Telegram channels have contained ads for some time now
Durov goes on to add how Telegram’s ‘one-to-many’ channels have millions of subscribers each and unlike the messaging component of the app, these channels have a social networking dimension. He, in fact, compared these channels to Twitter feeds. Durov says many of these channels already have ads that use third-party platforms and are even used by the owners of these channels to make money.
Even worse? Many of these ads look like regular messages and are also intrusive in nature. Telegram aims to fix this issue and will instead come up with their own ad platform for its public one-to-many channels. Telegram also says they will ensure that these ads are user-friendly, respects privacy and at the same time will allow them to cover the costs of servers and traffic.
In addition to covering Telegram’s costs, which Durov is reportedly still paying out of his own pocket, the new source of revenue is also intended to benefit the community. For example, channel owners could get more traffic and the creators of stickers could get more money for publishing them.
What do you think about Telegram’s new advertising plans and how does it affect your use of the platform? Let us know in the comments section!