The Rise of Telegram - Mobile Messaging App gains 5million Users After Whatsapp Takeover

Facebook may have paid a pretty penny ($19bn to be exact) for messaging app Whatsapp but it’s their rivals that could see the benefit as they're the ones that are clocking up the number of new users. 

Telegram messenger, to name one. On 23rd February via their Twitter account they announced that 4.95 million people had signed up, that day alone, and the iPhone app was the number one most downloaded in 48 countries. In October, the app could only boast about 100,000 daily active users.

It may have something to with the fact that the day before Whatsapp had experienced a high profile technical fault that meant it was out of service for four hours. 

However due to this influx of users, poor Telegrams servers were under a lot of strain meaning they too faced some technical difficulties.

 “Due to the insane growth rate our cluster in Europe experienced a 2-hour downtime today. We are adding servers, but it takes time,” tweeted the company.

 “We expected 1 million registrations per day max; 5 million daily signups seemed crazy,” they tweeted before telling another user that: “Frankly, we’d rather have a gradual organic growth. Our plan was to be ready for this kind of growth in 2 months, not now.”

Telegram for iPhone launched in August 2013 and for Android in October. It is run by a team in Berlin and backed by Russian entrepreneur Pavel Durov and his brother. Their vision for the app was not intended to bring revenue which is why they will not sell ads or accept outside investment as laid out in Telegrams FAQ

We’re not building a ‘user base’, we are building a messenger for the people. Pavel Durov, who shares our vision, supplied Telegram with a generous donation through his Digital Fortress fund, so we have quite enough money for the time being. If Telegram runs out, we’ll invite our users to donate or add non-essential paid options.

Telegram also has an open API for other developers to build their own apps based on its technology, including versions for Windows, Mac and Linux computers, and Windows Phone smartphones.

Telegram is not the only messaging app to see a rise in users since Whatsapp’s takeover. Swiss startup Threema doubled its user base in 24 hours, gaining 200,000 new users who each paid €1.79 for the privilege. 

Photo (cc) Desiree Catani. Some rights reserved.