Last Telegram update of 2021 brings some highly anticipated features

Telegram Homescreen Lifestyle
Telegram Homescreen Lifestyle (Image credit: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Telegram has rolled out its last major update for this year.
  • The update introduces a few new capabilities that users have been waiting for.
  • It now has iMessage-style reactions, spoilers, translation, and more.

Telegram has a new treat in store for its users before 2021 ends. The service has released a new update containing a bunch of new features including message reactions, hidden text formatting for spoilers, themed QR code, and translation.

While majority of the best messaging apps for Android such as Facebook Messenger and Slack already support emoji reactions for quite some time, Telegram hasn't had this feature until now. Although it is a little late to the game, it has now added message reactions that clearly take inspiration from Apple's iMessage.

You can bring up the emoji reactions by tapping or holding down on the message, just like you can with other message reactions. Each reaction has its own animation, and you can even assign a specific reaction to the double-tap gesture so it can be triggered quickly.

Spoilers are also a new format that allows you to discuss what happens in a movie you've seen with friends in a group chat while hiding the key events or twists from the rest of the group who haven't seen it yet. You can use the Spoiler formatting to hide specific texts by selecting certain sections of a message and applying the Spoiler formatting. This will also hide the chosen parts in the chat list and notifications. However, people can still view the hidden message if they tap it.

Another handy feature that Telegram picked up is the translation option, which adds a dedicated translation button in the message's context menu. You can switch on the new capability via the language section in the app's settings.

You can, of course, disable message translation for languages you already speak or understand. This option is available on all of the best Android phones, though the number of languages available varies depending on the operating system.

Telegram has also enabled the creation of themed QR codes for anyone with a public username, as well as QR codes for bots, groups, and channels. This feature is intended to make it simpler to share usernames or group chats.

Finally, the messaging app has gained more interactive emoji. This means that after sending an emoji, you can tap it to watch its amusing animation. These new features are included in Telegram 8.4.

Jay Bonggolto
News Writer & Reviewer

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.