Telegram is a messaging app like WhatsApp. That’s if you haven’t heard of it yet. It has pretty much the same look in terms of the actual chatting interface. The Material Design update to the overall UI has made it even the more beautiful.

WhatsApp has been there for a long time now. I started on WhatsApp some years back. It is basically a must-have for me. Lecture updates. Friends’ Groups and all that. Just recently Group limit was increased from 50 to 100. And you can now know when your message is delivered and when it is read.

But which of these two is the best?

Although I can’t live without WhatsApp at this stage of my life, as almost every communication I make is through it, I think Telegram is better. Here’s why:

  • No subscription fees forever. No ads. – WhatsApp has no ads. From this blog post of theirs‘ we have known why they hate ads. We all hate ads. The yearly subscription fees for WhatsApp, however, is the problem. I have 3 months to go and I don’t know whether or not I will pay.


  • Sync across all devices – Telegram can be used across ALL your devices. If you have a tablet, a phone, a desktop and a laptop, you can have Telegram on all your devices and it will sync perfectly all your messages. So you can thus chat from wherever using your one account on any device you want.


  • Large Group/Chat Size – Though WhatsApp has increased group limits, you may find that 100 limits certain discussions you may want to have with a large crowd. Telegram has a 200 number limit.


  • Sending Files – WhatsApp doesn’t allow you to send files and documents. You can only send pictures and music and voice notes. Telegram solves this. You have an .apk, a .doc, an .exe, and you want to send it to someone? Telegram steps in. Practically any file. I’m still not sure on size limits.


  • Public Usernames – You can even have your own username! I am @DicksonOtieno on Telegram if you need to find me.


  • Secret Chats, Encryption and Self-Destructing Messages – Secret chats employ use of end to end encryptions plus self destructing messages. This is good news for people who need extremely secure communication methods for high level secrets such as passwords and the likes. ‘While all Telegram messages are always securely encrypted, messages in Secret Chats use client-client encryption, while ordinary chats use client-server/server-client encryption and are stored securely encrypted on Telegram servers’.


  • Cloud Storage – With Telegram you store all your messages (and can delete them) in the cloud. You can also have your media stored in the cloud.


  • Speed – Telegram claims to be the fastest and most reliable messaging app even on slow connections.


  • Open API – There’s an open API. Developers can thus create and build their own stuff/tools.

I personally think Telegram will outdo WhatsApp in a couple of months time. That’s if it remains a non-commercial product.

From their FAQ page, Telegram says this: “Unlike WhatsApp, Telegram is cloud-based and heavily encrypted… It does not belong to (anyone or) any country in particular. It is a global non-commercial project with contributors from all over the world… Telegram‘s goal is to allow everyone to get back their right to privacy… Telegram is not intended to bring revenue, it will never sell ads or accept outside investment. It also cannot be sold. We’re not building a “user base”, we are building a messenger for the people…”

So there you have it. Is it Telegram or WhatsApp for you?