Telegram has announced that beginning early 2021, the service will start its efforts to monetise its services. These efforts will bring ads to the privacy centric platform, which its founder-CEO Pavel Durov states has been the most elegant solution to cover the costs of running its business, instead of selling Telegram to a larger group such as Facebook. These ads will appear in Telegram’s public channels, which the company believes is the least disruptive format to attract advertisers while not totally destroying the usage experience.
However, Durov has promised that this does not signal the end of Telegram the way you probably know it right now. Personal chats on the end to end encrypted messaging app will remain the way it works right now, and so will the app’s group chats. The possibility of displaying ads in these sections of Telegram would be a “bad idea” said Durov in his blog post, affirming that “communication between people should be free of advertising of any sort.”
The ads will instead be shown in Telegram’s public channels and the ‘one to many’ chat channels. These largely work as public forum of sorts, with more users posting in tandem with each other in the public domain. Telegram’s one to many feeds also work like Twitter accounts, and personalities broadcasting to their followers in these channels often incorporate third party advertisements, which appear just the way standard messaging on Telegram works. Durov labels these apps as “intrusive”, hence suggesting that the first party apps that Telegram plans to push in these channels will have a different design and layout from normal messages. He also claims that the ads will respect your privacy,
Going forward, Durov states that Telegram will look at other monetisation avenues too, such as a ‘premium’ tier subscription of Telegram that will add more features for enterprise and more intensive personal users. Through all of this, Durov maintains that no matter what, Telegram’s privacy centric user experience should not change for anyone even with ads in question. In the distant future, Telegram may also look to offer various ways for professionals to market their products and services, in turn receiving a cut from them for offering a service to ply their trade on.