Telegram Update Brings Topics to Groups, Collectible Usernames, More

Telegram has rolled out a big new update which apart from improvements also brings new features. It introduces Topics in large groups, adds collectible usernames that can be secured by blockchain and traded or exchanged online. Also introduced is Voice-to-Text for video messages that needs a premium subscription and basically converts any video message to text. The update is available for Telegram users on both Android and iOS platforms. While most of the new features will be made available for both operating systems, there are some specific ones that have been created for each platform as well.

Among the bigger updates is Topics in groups that can be enabled by group admins in their Group Settings. These basically function as individual chats within a group, so they also have their own shared media and notification settings. All regular features available in groups (like polls, pinged messages, and bots) will also be available in Topics. As per Telegram the new Topics feature is currently only available in large groups (with over 200 members) for now and will be rolled out with a different set of tools to smaller groups later this year.

The new update also introduces collectible usernames letting users assign multiple collectible usernames to each of their accounts and public chats. The collectible usernames are secured by Telegram’s TON blockchain network (that went live earlier this year) and can be bought or sold using a new platform called Fragment, which was created for it. Collectible usernames can be less than 5 characters long and allows users to create unique usernames. Telegram claims that a user has complete control over a collectible username once acquired and that it can be deactivated when needed (making them invisible online), but without losing the name.

Voice to text has been available to Telegram Premium subscribers for a while letting them convert voice messages to text on the fly. The new update will now let subscribers convert video messages to text as well. Premium subscribers also get access to 12 new emoji packs that can be used in messages, captions and even in statuses.

Among other improvements and updates is a redesigned Night mode for iOS that according to Telegram makes colours appear more balanced and includes better blurring effects when scrolling through chats. Users on Android can now resize text by changing the text size in chat settings, that will now make the sizes of all chat text appear bigger or smaller. The new update also brings 4 new interactive emoji that basically play full-screen effects in one-on-one chats.

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