Telegram users get disappearing messages feature

Admins can also map the growth of their channels by tracking what sources users are joining from.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

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Telegram has launched ‘auto-delete messages’ feature in its app, allowing users to chat without leaving a trace of their conversations behind.

Users can now set a timer, either 24 hours or 7 days, in any chat before sending messages. The messages will then disappear for all members in a private chat, group, or channel, after the set timeframe. The feature was previously only available for secret chats.

Only admins can enable this feature in groups and channels, the messaging app said in a statement. All the messages will show a countdown to their deletion time, which will help users track the time to specific messages. The feature will be available on both Android and iOS devices.

Also Read | Telegram will ensure ads are ‘privacy conscious’, says founder Durov

Facebook-owned WhatsApp rolled out the disappearing messages feature in November last year, allowing users to send messages in both private chats and groups that vanish after seven days. Facebook also added the 'vanish mode' to Messenger and Instagram in the same month.

Telegram's auto-delete messages feature will only apply to messages sent after enabling the feature, earlier messages will remain in the chat history, the Dubai-based company clarified.

Telegram has become a popular messaging app, following WhatsApp’s contentious policy update. At least 1 out of 5 people prefer Telegram over WhatsApp with privacy being one of the reasons, according to a survey by market research firm TechARC.

The messaging app said it has improved its reporting system. Users can now report a specific message and can add a comment to the report to give more context. Users can also report spam content, fake accounts, content related to violence, child abuse and pornography, the company stated.

Also Read | Here’s how you can transfer WhatsApp chats to Telegram

Group or channel admins can also create expiring invite links or send out QR codes, to a limited number of people for a limited amount of time. The QR codes can also be displayed on billboards and brochures, and admins can also map the growth of their channels by tracking what sources users are joining from.

Other new features include home screen widgets, improved chat imports, new animated emojis and broadcast groups for members to participate via live voice chat.

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Printable version | Apr 19, 2021 9:40:59 AM |

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