What you need to know
- Telegram's latest improvements include the ability to customize your message alerts using any sound.
- The app has also rolled out custom mute durations and more increments for the auto-delete timer.
- Its picture-in-picture mode on Android now lets you change the size of its window player.
- There are new animated food emojis in chat and a refreshed interface for changing your phone number.
Although Telegram is arguably less popular than WhatsApp, the team behind one of the best messaging apps deserves a pat on the back for releasing new updates almost on a monthly basis. The latest round of enhancements is now available, and it gives you more control over your Telegram experience.
Telegram now lets you take more control of your notification sound by setting any sound as your message alert. This means you can now make notification tones out of your favorite music or even memes. A voice message can also be used as a tone and assigned to any single chat or group of chats.
However, there are a few limitations. Telegram says it only supports audio files and voice messages under 300KB in size and up to 5 seconds long. These tones are cross-platform, so you can listen to them on your iPhone even if you uploaded them on your Android phone.
In addition to creating your own notification sound, you can pick from any of the tones available on Telegram’s Notification Sounds channel.
The mute function has also become much more useful. Telegram's latest update gives you more options for how long you want to mute a chat. You can, for example, choose to pause notifications for 30 minutes if you don't want to be disturbed during your lunch break, or even for 2 months if you're on sabbatical leave.
Previously, you could only mute chats for 8 hours or 2 days, so the new options are more practical. Custom mute durations can be accessed through a new streamlined menu that appears in every chat.
In addition, the update adds more auto-delete timer increments, such as 2 days, 3 weeks, 4 months, and more. This feature can be enabled in any chat to automatically delete messages at any time.
On Android, the app's picture-in-picture mode now allows you to pinch to resize the window player. Telegram has also improved message translation for iOS users, with support for the same number of languages as on Android.
When forwarding messages to other chats, you can also include reply previews "so everyone can see the full context of your inside jokes," Telegram said in a blog post.
You'll notice a new animation when you change your phone number in the Settings menu, as well as a new animated food emoji if you want to include a flipping cookie or a rotating slice of cake in your chats.
These improvements arrive a month after Telegram introduced a new download manager and redesigned its attachment menu.
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Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.