Telegram has launched a slew of new features in this year’s second spring update, including custom notification tones, setting custom durations for muting chats or auto-deleting messages, and improved forwarding that preserves replies. Android users also get an updated picture-in-picture mode, while message translation has been improved on iOS. All users can send and receive new animations as well as animated emojis. Another major feature is a new capability for bots that will allow developers to offer website-like experiences through the instant messaging app.

As per a blog post shared by Telegram, the first feature in the second spring update of the year is Custom Notification Sounds. Users can now create custom alerts from music “or even memes.” In order to set up a custom notification sound, users can tap a short audio file or voice message in any chat and instantly add it to the list of available notification sounds. These can then be assigned to any chat by going to Settings > Notifications and Sounds. The app currently supports audio files and voice messages under 5 seconds and up to 300KB in size.

The second new feature for Telegram users is the ability to define a custom duration to temporarily mute chats. Going beyond limited options such as muting chats for 8 hours or 2 days, users can now pause notifications for a specific duration. The app is offering customisation for each chat – allowing users to choose from Disable Sound to receive notifications silently, or Mute to turn off notifications completely.

This can be done by tapping ‘Notifications’ on a chat’s info page or Menu > Mute in the chat header on Android, or tapping ‘Mute’ on a chat’s info page on iOS Telegram app.

The Picture-in-Picture mode gets a new player
Photo Credit: Telegram

Next in line are the new Auto-Delete Menu in Profiles, and Replies in Forwarded Messages. The new Auto-Delete menu will allow users to choose flexible timer settings, such as 2 days, 3 weeks, 4 months, etc, to delete the conversations automatically. The feature is aimed at making a conversation more private, and can be enabled from Menu (three dots) on Android or Menu (three lines) on iOS on a chat’s info page in the Telegram app.

Replies in Forwarded Messages is essentially an extension of the Reply feature. Currently, when you reply by quoting a text message, it includes a small preview of the conversation that can be tapped to instantly jump to the original message. The new feature on Telegram will now show the same reply previews when forwarding messages to other chats. This will allow the recipients of a forwarded message to see the full context of the conversation. Furthermore, users can hide the original sender’s name or media captions.

The next feature is improved message translation on iOS. Support for translation has been extended to more languages such as Ukrainian. To enable Translation, go to Settings > Language to add a dedicated Translate button to the context menu when selecting a message. There is an improved Picture-in-Picture implementation on Telegram for Android. Apart from a new rounded design for the player window, the new update allows users to pinch it to change its size.

animated emojis telegram intext animations

Users will now use food animated emojis
Photo Credit: Telegram

The Telegram app also now has new animations and animated emojis. Changes have been made to the UI for changing phone numbers in Settings. Animated ducks now walk users through the process. The new animated emojis include food items such as french fries, pizza, burgers, hot dog, cakes, pastries, ice cream cone, and donut.

Last but not least, Telegram now gives bot developers tools to create flexible interfaces with JavaScript. With these tools, developers can create third-party Telegram bots that can offer website-like experiences. For example, users could order food via a bot within Telegram app. These bots can also be customised. Telegram bots currently support converting files, online shopping, processing payments via 15 integrated providers, and other functions.

Furthemore, Telegram bots can also “handle small tasks like chat management by adding extra features, automating processes or helping moderators”. Users can also add bots to their group or channel as well as instantly configure rights and permissions for them.

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