While Telegram has been free since its inception, it will soon be offering premium services that users can pay for.
Pavel Durov announced this on his channel on June 10 and mentioned that while the new Telegram Premium service will be based on a subscription plan, the free service will remain with all its existing features and some new ones.
What Will Telegram Premium Feature?
At the moment, we only have the beta to go off, but it’s thought that it will feature improved download speeds, voice-to-text messaging, and more customisation tools for users’ chats. It’s also likely that Telegram Premium will remove the ads in one-to-many channels.
The rationale behind this service is that the increased file sizes, faster download speeds, premium stickers, and advanced management features for chats would come at a cost that Telegram couldn’t sustain through advertising alone while also keeping the whole platform free for users not looking to pay for the service.
How Much Will Telegram Premium Cost?
Again, the price of Telegram Premium wasn’t mentioned in Durov’s announcement, but if the beta is anything to go off, we’re looking at a monthly subscription of $4.99. Of course, this doesn’t explain how much the service will cost in different areas and currencies.
How Will This Affect the Free Service?
There’s quite some push and pull between those wanting more powerful features and those that want the service to remain free.
At the moment, Durov has promised that “all existing features remain free” and that those using the free service will still be able to enjoy some of the benefits that others are paying for. For example, when a premium user sends extra-large documents, media, and stickers, those who don’t subscribe can still view them.
Users Not Advertisers
One of Durov’s main points in the announcement was that Telegram is looking to be “funded primarily by its users, not advertisers” to ensure that the platform prioritises them. That said, there wasn’t any talk of removing ads from the platform so don’t expect them to disappear overnight or even reduce in number.