Telegram is adding a slew of new features with the new update. It is introducing an auto-delete feature for messages, home screen widgets, expiring invite links, and more. The chat app is also borrowing a feature from its rival WhatsApp – any invite link can be converted into a scannable QR Code. You can now send an expiring group invite link that can be made inactive after a certain time. You can also see which users joined using each invite link to find out where new members came from. Businesses can track which format has been better for growth.
Telegram is bringing an auto-delete timer in all chats, which will automatically erase messages for all participants either 24 hours or 7 days after sending. All messages show a countdown to their deletion time – simply tap on Android or press and hold on iOS to take a look.
To enable the timer on Android, tap ⋮ > Clear History then choose a duration.
On iOS, press and hold a message, tap Select > Clear Chat (top-left) > Enable Auto-Delete.
Telegram is also introducing widgets. The Chat Widget shows a preview of recent messages, while the Shortcut Widget shows only names and profile pictures. On Android, chats, and messages in the widget will always be up to date, and you can further expand the widget to take up more of your screen. On iOS, widgets will only get fresh data occasionally and can’t be expanded. As per the company, this is due to system limitations.
Along with the main invite link, owners and admins can now create additional links with a limited duration, number of uses, or both. Moreover, it can be converted into a scannable QR Code. Now, Groups that are close to the limit (200,000 participants) can convert into Broadcast Groups that allow unlimited members.
The app is also improving the chat import feature, which was added to Telegram last month. Now, the imported messages will appear sorted by their original date if added to a Telegram chat that is new or has fewer than 1000 messages. The company is also bringing an improved reporting system. All reporting options allow you to add a comment to give more context – like when reporting fake accounts. Lastly, the chat app has added new animated emojis.