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Group video calls are coming to Telegram this May

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Group video calls will be coming to Telegram’s messaging platform with what’s being touted as a fully featured implementation, including support for web-based videoconferencing. Telegram CEO Pavel Durov announced that the iOS version of Telegram will be updated to support group video calls in May.

The company originally planned to add the video call feature to its messaging service at some point in 2020, but the feature never materialized. Telegram did at least make it into the new year with one video call addition: end-to-end encrypted one-on-one video calls were added in August 2020.

Founder Pavel Durov made the announcement via a (text) message posted to his official Telegram channel today where he wrote “we will be adding a video dimension to our voice chats in May, making Telegram a powerful platform for group video calls”.

“Screen sharing, encryption, noise-cancelling, desktop and tablet support — everything you can expect from a modern video conferencing tool, but with Telegram-level UI, speed and encryption. Stay tuned!” he added, using the sorts of phrases you’d expect from an enterprise software maker.

Telegram has grown significantly over the pandemic, taking advantage of the shift to working from home and the general desire to stay connected securely. The company announced it reached 400 million monthly active users in April 2020, up from 200 million in 2018. Some of that has to do with its competitor, WhatsApp, fumbling how it communicated its new privacy policy to customers, which inspired some users to leave the Facebook-owned app for Telegram and Signal.

Despite seeming a bit less nimble, WhatsApp actually beat Telegram to offering end-to-end encrypted group video calls. The company added group video and voice calling in 2018.

Source: The Verge

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