Not another messaging app, we hear you cry. But wait, this could actually be the best thing since sliced bread, especially as it’s fully open source and the developers have committed to never charging a penny or displaying nasty adverts. Ah…see…now you’re listening…
Telegram is a brand new messaging service along the lines of WhatsApp, which comes with some real differences. The first is it’s cloud based, which means that all the messages, images and videos you send are also stored centrally on large servers so you can access them from multiple devices. Very useful if you spend a lot of time chatting on different platforms.
If this makes you nervous, you can also use a special mode called ‘Secret Chat’, which uses seriously strong end to end encryption, and doesn’t store anything anywhere, except on the original devices. These messages can be set to self-destruct after an amount of time and cannot be forwarded. And once they’re gone they’re gone, from both the sender and recipient device.
The developers are so confident about their security that they’ve offered $200,000 to anyone who can crack their encrypted protocols. That’s pretty confident we’d say.
The source code is available for anyone to view, and since the code has originated outside the USA, there’s a good chance the NSA have had no chance to install a backdoor. There’s currently versions available for Apple iOS and Android with Windows and Mac coming soon.
This looks like a very interesting product, and a welcome change from the commercial, mass market messaging apps like Skype, WhatsApp and Viber, all of which only deliver locked in communications, with no guarantee of long term security or service. Definitely one to watch!