Telegram Finally Gets a Video Call Feature

You can visually chat with up to 30 people

Telegram is finally introducing group video calls to its app so that you can chat with up to 30 people at once. 

After more than a year of planning a much-needed group video calling feature, Telegram officially announced its availability on Monday. You can now make a Telegram video call on iOS and Android smartphones, as well as on tablets and desktops. 

Telegram logo

Getty Images/NurPhoto 

The company said that video call participants max at the first 30 people who join, but noted that there could be an unlimited amount of audio-only participants. Telegram also said that it plans to increase the 30-person limit in the future. 

The new video calls also feature a handy option that allows you to pin someone’s video screen to your feed so that they stay front and center as more participants join the call. 

Other updates Telegram announced on Monday include better noise suppression options, the ability to screen share during a video call, importing stickers, and animated backgrounds and emojis. You also can communicate with Telegram bots more easily with a new menu button that lets you browse and send commands to bots for bot enthusiasts.

Telegram video chat feature

Telegram

According to data from mobile analyst firm Sensor Tower, Telegram downloads have been up almost four times since January 2020. Downloads of the app surged at the beginning of the year, with approximately 40 million people downloading the app in January alone. 

The app has become a popular alternative to WhatsApp since it has optional end-to-end encryption and isn’t owned by Facebook. Also, unlike WhatsApp, you don’t have to share your phone number, which is a significant advantage for chatting with large groups.  

Telegram said it doesn’t use your data to target ads and doesn’t disclose your data to third parties.

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