Telegram adds video stickers, better reactions, full-screen effects

Even though practically no one in the U.S. uses Telegram, with over 500 million monthly active users, it is arguably among the world's most popular instant messaging apps. Many people use Telegram as an alternative to more popular apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. And although Telegram has never really managed to shed its label of being a WhatsApp clone, its massive userbase does make it a force to reckon with in the world of instant messengers.

One of the reasons for Telegram's continued popularity is the long list of features it supports. The app has generally been considered a more feature-loaded messaging client compared to its biggest rival WhatsApp. One of the many ways Telegram keeps its 500 million-plus users happy is to be on a perpetual feature addition spree. Telegram publicizes these feature additions via regular posts on its official blog. In the most recent blog post, the company announced the addition of five new features to Telegram. 

What's new with Telegram in 2022?

Video sticker creation: The first significant feature addition to Telegram in 2022 is giving users the ability to make their own video stickers in addition to the ones available officially from Telegram. Today's update will let people use any sticker on Telegram, including those converted from regular videos. This feature will also allow users to import regularly used stickers from other apps and use them on Telegram.

Reactions have been improved: WhatsApp may not have them yet, but Telegram users have been using 'Reactions' on the app for quite some time now. The 'Reactions' feature on Telegram has now been improved with better, more compact animations and the ability to jump directly to all the new reactions you may have missed.

Additionally, if you're not too happy with the initial size of your reaction, you can press and hold a reaction icon and increase its size. Telegram also adds that the reactions feature is now synchronized — so what you see on your screen is exactly what the recipient sees on their screen. Telegram Reactions now also have a read status feature, which means you will now know if someone has seen your reaction.

Interactive emoji with full-screen effects: In addition to improving how the 'Reactions' feature works on Telegram, the new update also includes five entirely new reactions. The update also lets people send these new 'Reactions' as interactive emoji with support for full-screen effects.

Long press back and download to update

Apart from these changes, the January 2022 update for Telegram also includes refinements to the way power users navigate through the app. The 'recent chats' feature on Telegram has been improved with a long press to the 'Back' button now offering several new navigation options to make life easier for the most ardent of Telegram users.

The January 2022 update for Telegram also included a bunch of bug fixes for known issues plaguing Telegram users for the past few months. Folks using Telegram's voice calling feature should see a notable improvement in call quality. Telegram's native Translation facility also sees several improvements.

Most of these updates have rolled out folks using Telegram for iOS. Android users are gradually being seeded the fresh update. If you can't wait for the official update to arrive, you can manually install the updated Android version directly from the Telegram website.