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Telegram partners with Fragment to remove SIM requirement for new signups

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Telegram has partnered with Fragment to remove SIM requirements for new signups. Fragment allows users to create a “blockchain-powered” anonymous number to use with Telegram. Much like a SIM card, the number is private and exclusive to the user. 

In addition to dropping the requirement for a SIM card, several new security features are also being added to the app. The familiar auto-delete timer for chats now can work globally as well, meaning you can wipe all your chats after a predetermined period. 

By default, the global timer applies to any new chats (regardless of who starts them) after enabling the feature. However, users do have the option to include older chats in the timer as well. Additionally, in smaller group chats, the auto-delete timer can now be started by any member who can change the group’s name and picture.

Outside of the security and privacy-related updates, Topics is also getting a 2.0 update which sorts group topics into multiple threads. Users now get a two-column mode that separates topics from chats, giving a much simpler interface for larger group chats. 

There’s also a new “Aggressive Anti-Spam” filter which doesn’t rely on third-party options to block and report spam. Instead, Telegram’s new anti-spam algorithm can take care of more spam messages in group chats of over 200 members, with admins able to report false positives.

Telegram Premium crosses 1 million paid subscribers

After launching Premium in June earlier this year, Telegram founder and CEO Pavel Durov announced Tuesday that the service had crossed more than one million subscribers in the six months it’s been active. 

The service was launched in a serious bid to monetise the platform and offers several additional features, including the ability to send files up to 4GB and faster downloads. Subscriptions start at $5 in the US and UK, with other markets like India getting lower rates at $2.2.

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