The question arises since 2013, when brothers Nikolai and Pavel Durov decided to challenge Mark Zuckerberg, the current owner of WhatsApp, in the instant messaging app market.
An incontrovertible fact is that the WhatsApp user base is much wider than that of Telegram, but it is equally true that the latter offers precious advantages and utilities, which the Zuckerberg app (still) does not know.
Better Telegram or WhatsApp, then? Let’s compare the two apps and try to figure out which one is more convenient to install and use.
Telegram and WhatsApp compared
We analyze seven main features that will allow us to compare the two apps and highlight their differences.
1. Basin of users
As I mentioned, WhatsApp is the most downloaded and used instant messaging app, so the one on which, probably, you will be able to meet the largest number of friends and acquaintances.
2. Access and multi-access
Accessing Whatspp is simple: you need to install the app on your device, connect it to your phone number and start using it. But what happens if you change your smartphone or device?
In this case you will have to cancel your account from the smartphone you no longer use and proceed with a new configuration on the new device. This is because WhatsApp is linked to the possession of a SIM.
Access to Telegram, on the other hand, is linked to the use of a username, which you yourself will choose and match to your telephone number. In this way you can access your profile from any device, without necessarily having to deactivate and then reactivate your account, as is the case for WhatsApp.
The username also allows you to be found in the global search of Telegram and, in the same way, allows you to also find friends of your interest.
What if you have a blog? Another useful feature of Telegram is the possibility to insert a link of the type https://telegram.me/username which, if clicked, will automatically open a Telegram chat window with the account linked to the specified username.
3. Using the desktop app
Both Telegram and WhatsApp can be used from the desktop (via a PC program or a Web version of the app), but between the two there is a fundamental difference, which assigns a further advantage to Telegram.
WhatsApp, in fact, can count on a simple interface to the smartphone. This means that if your mobile device is discharged or turned off or not connected to the internet, you will not be able to use the desktop client to chat with your friends.
With Telegram, however, this inconvenience does not occur, since clients on the desktop and clients on the smartphone are separate, therefore usable independently.
WhatsApp and Telegram use two different security systems. WhatsApp, following criticism regarding privacy and at the same advent of Telegrams on the market, introduced the encryption end-to-end in all the chat.
So what happens to your content? The message is encrypted on sending and decrypted on reception; in this way, only the device that emits and the one that receives have access to the content of the message.
However, you must also consider that on the WhatsApp servers, the date / time of sending / receiving and above all, the sender’s mobile number are stored. Also, if you have activated automatic backup on GoogleDrive, your chats will be saved on Big G’s servers.
Telegram, on the other hand, uses a double encryption system: Client-Server and Client-Client, used in the case of secret chats. In this second case, the messages and contents sent and received are not stored in any server, while in the first case they are saved on the cloud used by the instant messaging app.
5. Cloud, local storage and backup
Another valuable feature of Telegram is the use of the cloud to store sent and received content, using the local database only for a part of it, which you can decide to automatically delete every week or every month.
WhatsApp, on the other hand, saves the contents of the chats all in local memory, which you will have to empty manually. What if you want to save your messages and files before deleting them from your smartphone? You will be able to schedule a periodic backup on Google Drive or via iCloud for iOS.
6. Sharing attachments
WhatsApp allows you to send photos, videos, audio files, current position and contacts up to a maximum of 16 MB and, very importantly, it will compress the files to make them fall within this limit, causing them to lose quality.
Telegram, on the other hand, allows you to send any type of file, even uncompressed, within the limit of 1.5 GB. A huge potential for transferring (rather than just sharing) files.
7. Additional functions: which ones and for whom?
In the field of additional functions offered to users, Telegram is one step ahead of WhatsApp. In fact, the Zuckerberg app has the ability to make video calls , which Telegram still does not support, but the latter makes super groups (in addition to groups, such as WhatsApp), channels and bots available to users.
The super groups are, in fact, large groups, which can contain up to 5,000 members (groups have a limit of 200 members), have more functionality than groups and the basic settings can only be used by the administrator (otherwise from what happens for Telegram groups).
The channels can be thought of as newsletters, but less invasive and more immediate, they are managed by a single person, who publishes the content he or she wants and is followed by those who are interested in such content.
Then there are the bots, a gem of Telegram. These are instant and automatic chats which can be integrated into the app and which interact with the requests entered by the user following specific and predetermined commands.
Bots are valuable because they allow you to do many things: access specific content and information designed to meet specific needs, buy, and pay and so on.
WhatsApp or Telegram?
On balance, although WhatsApp can count on a much wider user base, Telegram has from its characteristics, potential and functionality that the Zuckerberg app (still) does not have.
Jennifer is a content writer and a blogger who has working in a leading company who helps people to how to get amazon category ungating service. She also manages different social media platforms for different brands.