This sounds good for people who want to switch from Whatsapp to Telegram for obvious reasons.
But people should stop putting these companies on a pedestal and stop trusting them. Someone already even mentioned Signal, which was banned in Iran few days ago.
First problem? they are centralized, so you have to trust the server, the company, really believe nobody has access to your information, etc etc. Especially with Telegram where you can even compose a message on a device and finish on another device etc.
People shouldn’t trust Pavlov Durov only because of the supposedly drama with the Russian government. It could be a simple act to easily get people information, it’s not like he is not a Russian oligarch after all who got some training on propaganda at University.
BUT maybe He is a good guy who is trying to make the world better, or let’s pretend he is. It doesn’t mean his service is perfect and will protect you or you are safe using it.
1. The E2EE is not even on by default and it is not like used everywhere on the app.
2. They can ban people, because they can ban groups even if they supposedly say all chats are private even if they are on public groups.
3. It asks for phone numbers, it is centralized, etc.
Of course today, if you want to make video and audio calls without using facebook or google or Mcrosoft services, your best choice could probably be Telegram. But I wouldn’t trust the app. Same with Signal, you can make calls, but it is even worst since you even have to have a phone AND the phone number to use the Desktop app.
Of course there are apps that are decentralized and I hope they improve and eventually replace these centralized services that have control of your data. Just asking for a phone number is too much since most places will want to have your ID to get sim card in order for you to “switch companies and keep your number” and reasons like that, which technically are good, but then you are traceable and easy to find and you are not anonymous anymore.
Everytime I watch Project Veritas videos and then O’Keefe is like giving a phone number so you can send him any info with the Signal app, I just wonder how people can use these services where you have to actually give a phone number in order to connect, and Telegram is not better at that, it even wants more info than just a phone number.
There are apps like Session, onion routing app made by Oxen team (previously called Loki), they also have Lokinet (probably will be rebranded soon) which is better than Tor. But it is anonymous, private and secure messenger, decentralized and everything gets stored on each person’s device, which means, only people who has access to your phone can have access to the info, your information doesn’t exist outside it. Session still doesn’t support video or audio calls, but they say they are working on it thanks to the lokinet future integration, it won’t be perfect because of the nature of onion routing but it will be private and all that. And session has improved quite a lot in the last months, Private Groups were 10 people max, then 20 and now 100, multi device support will be available soon so you can get your conversation on two devices.
For more stable decentralize apps to do videocalls I would recommend P2P apps like Jami or Tox also are nice, of course Tox’s problem is that its mobile apps are not in a good state, so Jami is more recommended. But it is P2P so your IP will be easily known by the other person, so I would only use it with known people, not with strangers unless you use a VPN. But Jami is working on swarm chat which will allow multi device support to get a message on both devices and groups.
There is an app called Berty that is being developed that seems interesting too, like a P2P but it will be able to use bluetooth and all to connect with others so even if internet gets censored or is not available you can chat with others.
But decentralized communication apps is the future with all these dumb censorship and people wanting it because they were brainwashed to believe it is the right thing to do because ‘words hurt’ or whatever. So we need to find and support services that will not have any control over our data in their servers. Telegram server side is closed source, other claim their server code is open source like Signal but…. can you trust that the code they have on their server is the one they claim they have? Plus with the history of Signal and how it was born you can be suspicious who is really behind it, same with Telegram, just like you are with Facebook and Google and Microsoft.
It is still good, and I hope Telegram is not like some double agent company. But I would still not trust it because it is too much marketing and looking at all the encryption and how secure it is and all that, it is not the best, not even that better than Whatsapp on many things. So I would only recommend it for the calls you can make today, but I hope for decentralized services to improve and replace telegram, signal, whatsapp, etc etc.