Telegram, on June 19, announced the official rollout of its paid “Premium” subscription service marking the first big step towards what the WhatsApp-rival is calling sustainable monetisation. The paid tier will cost $4.99/month and will give users access to up to 4GB file uploads, faster downloads, exclusive stickers and reactions, and more.
Premium subscribers will get double the limits “for almost everything in the app” over non-paying users. They can follow up to 1,000 channels, create 20 chat folders with 200 chats each, and add a total of four accounts to Telegram instead of three. They can also pin up to 10 chats in the main list, put up longer bios with a link and animated profile pictures that can, now, show up throughout the app. A premium special badge will set these users apart “showing that they help support Telegram and are part of the club that receives exclusive features first.”
Telegram premium will also bring new tools to better organise chats such as the ability to open a “default chat folder” you pick every time you open the app. Subscribers will also get “dozens of stickers” with full-screen animations and more ways to react to messages, with over 10 new emoji with Telegram Premium. Voice-to-text will be available, too.
Lastly, premium users won’t be shown any ads, Telegram has confirmed.
That said, Telegram is also quick to add that running a premium subscription service, simultaneously, won’t affect free users. All existing features will continue to remain free and, also, non-paying users will be able to access some of the premium features—albeit indirectly— say for instance, they can, still, download larger 4GB files and view stickers that a paying subscriber might send to them.