Telegram might not be as popular as WhatsApp but it’s still loved by many. The instant messaging service owes its popularity to cool features like bots, secret chats, self-destructing messages, support for large files and more. Along with these features, Telegram is perceived as a very secure messenger since it’s based on MTProto Mobile protocol and brings end-to-end encryption support with Secret Chats. However, if the recent developments are any indication, the app is not as secure as you’d like.
A user recently posted an update on Twitter suggesting that Telegram logs every pasted message to syslog in macOS, even when you are using secret chats. Telegram CEO Pavel Durov was quick to avert the issue as something minor and even though Telegram for macOS has been updated to fix this loophole, we’ll suggest you to use a different messaging app, if you really want a more secure solution. Thus, we are listing down 5 Telegram Alternatives that you can use:
Viber trumps Telegram when it comes to security, as it features end-to-end encryption on messages, calls, photos and videos. Even the cross-platform messages are encrypted. Along with security, Viber lets you make free audio and video calls to Viber users and that’s not all, it also lets you make international calls to people who don’t use Viber. It also makes up for a great Telegram alternative with features like multi-device support, stickers and hidden chats.
Viber also offers games in the app and features like public chats. The only feature you might miss from Telegram is bots and if you don’t use it much, Viber is a worthy Telegram alternative.
Availability: Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Windows (Apps)
Chances are, you have used WhatsApp or are using it but if you left the instant messenger for Telegram in wake of security concerns, it’s time to get back. Unlike Telegram, which only offers end-to-end encryption in its “Secret Chats”, WhatsApp features end-to-end encryption everywhere. Be it chats, calls, shared media, everything is encrypted on WhatsApp, which means no one, not even WhatsApp can read your messages. Also, WhatsApp is completely free now. Moreover, you get features like calls, backup chats on Google Drive or iCloud and ability to format text, which Telegram lacks.
While Telegram users might miss the multi-device support and standalone clients for desktop, WhatsApp is said to be working on features like GIF support and video calls, so there’s plenty to look forward too.
Availability: Web; Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Windows, macOS (Apps)
Availability: Android, iOS, Windows Phone (Apps)
4. Signal Messenger
Signal Messenger is developed by the folks at Open Whisper Systems, which is the company that has partnered with Facebook to bring end-to-end encryption to WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. So, it’s no surprise that its very own open-source Signal Messenger features end-to-end encryption on chats, calls and the data shared. Apart from the security, Signal brings all the usual messaging features along with the ability to make calls. While it does not offer cross-platform support or pack features like Telegram, it’s still a pretty capable alternative if you can live with it.
Availability: Android, iOS (Apps), Chrome (Web)
5. Google Allo and Facebook Messenger
Similar to Telegram, Google’s upcoming Allo messaging app will not just have end-to-end encryption enabled by default, instead it packs an “Incognito mode” feature, which lets you chat in privacy with end-to-end encryption. Even Google’s video messaging app Duo features end-to-end encryption. It’s the same with Facebook Messenger as well. Facebook has started testing a “Secret Conversations” feature in Messenger, which brings end-to-end encryption and self-destructing messages.
Talking about Allo, the app should be released later this year with many Telegram-like features. There’s ability to increase font size of messages, chat bots, GIF support and stickers, which should make Allo a good Telegram alternative. The Allo app also features a cool Smart Replies feature, which are automatic replies to a text based on your past responses.
On the other hand, Facebook Messenger is a pretty well known messaging app with features like bots, stickers, audio & video calls, GIF support etc. With Secret Conversations arriving later this year, it should become a great Telegram alternative.
SEE ALSO: How to Use WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Other Chat Apps Simultaneously on PC or Mac
Use these Telegram Alternatives for a more secure solution
Telegram had a lead when it came to features and security in the past but the other companies have caught up pretty well. To sum things up, if you really love Telegram Messenger, we suggest you keep using it, considering the company was quick to fix things but if you just can’t use a non-secure messaging app, we reckon you use the aforementioned apps. Well, that’s all from our side, let us know your thoughts on the Telegram controversy and its alternatives in the comments section below.
On the whole, I believe that most of the centralized messengers are insecure. Even Telegram, which is considered to be the most encrypted among popular ones, stores users data. As for me, I prefer using less known messengers, like Utopia p2p https://utopia-ecosystem.com/ , but decentralized and encrypted ones. As only there I’m sure my info isn’t collected and can’t be passed to 3rd parties.
This is 2018 & I still love using telegram….
Telegram uses a custom none open algorithm. The Russian government tried to shut down the Telegram service earlier in the year, and was recently fined by the Russian government for not providing encryption keys to the FSB.
I love Telegram, but I am looking for alternatives now. The multi-device and multi-platform support is really key for me, so it looks like it is between Viber, Facebook, Skype and Google Hangouts… not that I trust Facebook, Google or Microsoft, but I trust them more than I do the Russian government.
I am not sure if this is an aprils fool or if you are serious with that?!
Telegram is by far the best and also most secure and flexible messenger, if you focus on texting and sending files.
The user can choose if he wants to write as secure messages as Threema by simply write in secure chat mode.
If you don’t need end-to-end encryption you can use the “normal” encrypted chat and have your chatlog automatically saved in the cloud and you can write from ANY device you want.
With Telegram you can send what ever file-type you want up to 2GB of file-size (not sure if it’s still 2GB or more already)
Gifs are already supported 😉 +dozens of other features (stickers, games, bots…)
(Video-)Calls are not supported yet but are about to come in 2017.
If you have more than one phone number you can run telegram easily twice on the same phone using (Plus Messenger)
To sum it up in one Sentence:
Telegram combines the best of all the other messengers you mentioned plus many extra features and you can freely choos what you want to use and what you don’t.
You are right.
I think the real joke is making vague allegation about the security of Telegram and then offer closed-source as alternatives.
alternatives to sms texting that require receipt of an sms text are self evidently NOT alternatives
Xmpp Texting is the alternative
Xmpp Texting is an Open Standard
for android the best choice is Conversations for its seamless OMEMO crypto
and ChatSecure for iOS
Telegram does not require SMS validation if you have a desktop client or another mobile.
With Telegram you can also call, can you with Conversations?
Otherwise, I’m all for XMPP but Telegram works out of the box. No plug-in necessary, no registration necessary.
Telegram promised to open the encryption code eventually but after years we are still waiting.
This is pushing me away.