WValue for money:
Also consider: hatsApp may be the talk of the town but it has its shortcomings. For one, the instant messages that are exchanged using the service are not beyond the prying eyes of the NSA and other entities seeking your personal data. It’s also now owned by Facebook – which doesn’t have the most impeccable of records when it comes to the privacy of personal information. A new messenger app aims to be everything WhatsApp is not, but is a clone i n ever y other way. Meet Telegram.
The brainchild of Russian Internet mogul Pavel Durov, Telegram claims to be faster and more secure than WhatsApp and is available for iOS and Android, with other platforms coming soon.
When you f irst run Telegram on your phone it will request your mobile number and then send you a validation code – this process will be very familiar to WhatsApp users.
In fact, most of Telegram is familiar territory. The way you change your photo, f ind friends, start chats and send messages – even the notif ication that messages have been sent and delivered – looks almost identical to WhatsApp.
Under the hood, however, Telegram is a different story. For one, it uses end-to-end encryption so that none of your conversations can be intercepted. In this way it is more similar to BBM than WhatsApp. The creators of Telegram are astutely marketing this feature in a world where we now have a heightened paranoia over government monitoring and t he like .
Telegram also seems to deliver on its claims of being
faster and more reliable than other services like it. It isn’t clear exactly how this is achieved, but in our anecdotal experience messages were delivered at lightning speed.
It is also beautifully designed and delivers a native experience on iOS and Android, making the app lightweight and responsive.
Another feature that separates Telegram from WhatsApp is the ability to start secret chats that aren’t recorded and won’t leave any evidence behind for your business colleagues, the authorities, or your spouse to find. Hey, we don’t judge.
Telegram founder Durov also claims that he will never allow advertising to be sold in the app and has no plans to charge for it either. He says that he has enough money already and just wants to deliver a better messaging experience. Sounds like a pretty sweet deal.
Thing is, I’ve just counted seven messaging apps on my phone and I’m not sure I need yet another one. Fortunately for Telegram, it is one of the best we’ve seen and more likely to survive my next clean-up. The challenge now will be to win over as many new users as possible, which seems to be happening thanks to WhatsApp users f leeing the Facebook universe. In fact, Telegram had to install new infrastructure last week to deal with the load.