Would you define Telegram as a social network? For most of its users, and especially for those of us who have been using it for years now, the instinctive answer is no. Telegram, like Whatsapp, Signal, and similar services, is an instant messaging solution, the logical evolution of the messengers for PCs that were so popular during the first decade of this century, and which these services took over from, we are still not quite clear why.
Telegram will also add Clubhouse inspired voice rooms
We mean, we do understand why these services have become so popular, but what we can’t quite understand is why the companies responsible for the most popular messaging services for PCs, such as Microsoft and Yahoo! didn’t know how to take this step in time, either with their services or by pulling out the big bucks, as Facebook did with Whatsapp. They had a well-established position that today is just a memory of the past.
Be that as it may, smartphone messaging services have evolved substantially since their appearance and, answering the question at the beginning, they have made an effort to become something more than what they were, trying to incorporate into their DNA some functions that, effectively, enter fully into the field of social networks. From searching for people close to you to chat with them to, and here is where we find the real meat of the matter, becoming a meeting point for strangers with something in common.
In the case of Telegram, first came the groups, in which all members can participate in the conversation, and then the channels, in which only the administrators can publish thematic content of interest to all the people who have joined it.
— WABetaInfo (@WABetaInfo) March 13, 2021
So, in this transmutation from instant messaging service to the social network, something that fits very well with the plans of those responsible for Telegram to start monetizing the service, the latest we know, by a tweet from WABetainfo, is that Telegram would be working on adding a voice room function similar to those of Clubhouse, the fashionable service since the middle of last year, and which we already told you about a few months ago. Nothing is yet known about its functions, expected dates for its arrival, whether the deployment will be universal or progressive … only that they are working on it, which is no small thing.
This is not surprising, far from it. A few weeks ago we learned that Twitter is also working on a feature similar to Clubhouse, and although there are no leaks or hints in this regard at the moment, we do bet they’re not the only ones. For example, it is a model that would fit very well within Facebook’s catalog of services, Google could take advantage of all its services and create a very feature-rich platform… we would be surprised if no one else, only Telegram and Twitter, were moving in this direction.
It will be interesting, though, to see the approach that both Telegram and Twitter take to the Clubhouse model: will it be a literal copy or, on the contrary, will they find a way to customize it and thus adapt it to what they offer today? Adding elements and functions is something that does not always work, just ask Spotify. A service in which, undoubtedly, a feature like Clubhouse would fit better than Instagram stories.