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Is Telegram Premium Worth Buying?by@tomisinolujinmi
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Is Telegram Premium Worth Buying?

by Tomisin OlujinmiAugust 20th, 2022
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Telegram is a popular messaging app that boasts over 300 million users and over 50 billion messages sent each day. It was founded in 2013 by brothers Nikolai and Pavel Durov. The social network grew at an unprecedented rate (more than 200 million users in two years) and started to incur added traffic and server costs. Telegram officially became "freemium forever" in June. It is not exactly $0.99 but it is less expensive than the premium versions offered by other apps such as Slack or Discord.

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The WhatsApp vs Telegram argument has changed forever, now that both services are either already operating or looking to operate (in the case of Whatsapp) with a freemium model. If you aren't familiar with the term, freemium refers to a business model where essential services are offered for free and advanced features are available for a fee. Late in June, Telegram announced a premium subscription that would provide more features to paying subscribers.


This post will delve into the new Telegram model, what it means for users and what it offers to its subscribers.


Telegram History

Telegram is a popular messaging app that boasts over 300 million users and over 50 billion messages sent each day. It was founded in 2013 by brothers Nikolai and Pavel Durov. Telegram provides private messaging and encryption features that millions of users find appealing and far beyond what alternative apps offer.


Telegram is cross-platform and accessible from any Internet-capable device. In addition to offering core instant messaging features such as video calling, group chats, file sharing, and voice-over IP, Telegram also offers a variety of unique features such as unlimited cloud storage, channels, secret chats, and self-destructing messages.


Telegram Premium Price and Features

When it first launched, Telegram made bold claims of being "free forever". However, it seems times have changed, and forever is a mighty long time. The social network grew at an unprecedented rate (more than 200 million users in two years) and started to incur added traffic and server costs. Monetization was always going to happen. It was only a matter of time. Telegram was launched late in June this year. Telegram officially became "freemium forever."


As for how much it costs, Telegram Premium is priced anywhere from about $4 to $5, depending on your location. It is not exactly $0.99 but it is less expensive than the premium versions offered by other messaging apps such as Slack or Discord.


Here are some of the perks you'll get with Telegram Premium:

  1. 4GB uploads: Telegram Premium will allow subscribers to send files as large as 4 GB (2 GB more than normal users) - enough space for 18 days of high-quality audio.


  1. Lightning-fast downloads: Premium users are allowed access to the fastest possible download speed Telegram is capable of. Their downloads can be as fast as their network permits.


  2. Increased limits: Premium users also have 2x the limits of non-premium users. That means Premium users can pin up to 10 chats, use links in their bio, follow up to 1000 channels and add a fourth account. You can create even more accounts by following this link.

  3. Voice-to-Text: Premium users have the option to get their voice messages transcribed into text.


  1. Premium Badges: You also get a shiny badge to show the other users that you’re a Premium subscriber. If none of the features appeal to you, this one certainly will, especially if you like showing off. This badge will show in chat lists, chat headers, and group lists.


  2. Ad-free experience: Sponsored ads — often displayed in large channels and to users in certain regions — will not be shown to Premium subscribers. So if you despise ads, consider getting a Premium subscription.

  3. Premium stickers and reactions: This is certainly the most lackluster Premium feature, at least to me but different strokes for different folks. Premium subscribers can react to messages with more emojis and have access to entire sets of Premium stickers.


Non-Premium users are not completely left out. They will still have access to all the pre-existing features they have enjoyed over the years. They will also benefit from some of the Premium upgrades by being able to download the large files sent by premium subscribers and they can tap on already added premium reactions to increase the counters.


Is Telegram Premium worth it

That is an entirely personal question and any answer will be personal. I will say that Telegram Premium was never intended for widespread adoption. So, if the Premium features don’t appeal to you, that is okay.


According to Durov, adoption by 2-3% of Telegram users will be enough to cover the costs of running the platform. Telegram Premium was created for the same people who like to pay for the highest tiers on niche apps or well, people who just like nifty features (not like those two are mutually exclusive).

There are several reasons why you should consider Telegram Premium. If you regularly post uncompressed, HD videos on your channel, you might need the increased file size limit. If you truly enjoy downloading at the fastest speeds possible, the monthly subscription fee may not be much of a barrier to you. You should also consider subscribing if you are in for the ad-free experience or you just simply want to support Telegram.


Conclusion

There are a number of people who detest this change by Telegram. I can’t say I fault them and I cannot claim or deny that there may be some profit incentive to this move. Regardless, the official blog post about the update ended with this statement: “We believe that Telegram's development should be driven primarily by its users, not advertisers. This way our users will always remain our main priority.” That earned Telegram and Durov my respect.


Telegram is a great messaging app, free or Premium. If you use the app frequently and want to unlock some useful features, then I'd recommend getting the Premium version. However, if you don't use Telegram that often or don’t care much for the Premium features, then feel free to stick with the free version.


I hope this post has answered some of your questions on this topic. What Premium feature are you most interested in? Let me know in the comments.