Telegram is rolling out a new update for its iOS and Android app that brings features such as Auto-Delete message, chat widget, and expiring invite links. The company shared the development in a blog post earlier this week, and users in India can enjoy the latest features, as well. Telegram explains that the auto-delete timer feature for all Telegram chats automatically erases messages either 24 hours or seven days, after sending. The latest update sits alongside the existing self-destruct timer feature in Secret Chats.
The Auto-delete only applies to messages sent after the timer is set and earlier messages will continue to remain in the chat history. Unlike in Secret Chats, the countdown starts when messages are sent, not read. To enable the timer on Android, tap on more (represented by three vertical lines) > Clear History > Choose the duration. Telegram users with an iPhone will need to long-press or hold a message, tap Select > Clear Chat (top-left) > Enable Auto-Delete. Notably, Telegram has rolled out a new widget for iOS that includes a shortcut to your favourite or recent chats. There’s a Chat Widget as well that shows a preview of recent messages. The company explains, “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 – this is due to system limitations.”
With the latest Telegram version, users can send invite links to users that would expire after a set time – similar to auto-erase or self-destructive messages. Users can also see which users joined using each invite link to find out where new members came from or which format has been most effective for growth. To view and manage invite links, tap to open your Group or Channel’s Profile > Edit > Invite Links.
Other features include new animated emojis in any chat. The company has also improved its reporting system where users can add a comment to give more context – like when reporting fake accounts. The Chat import feature from WhatsApp that Telegram introduced last month has also been improved for a better user experience. Additionally, Telegram groups that are close to the 200,000 member limit can now convert into Broadcast Groups that allow unlimited members. However, converting to a Broadcast Group would only allow admins to send messages, but members can still join voice chats.