Telegram goes big on emoji in latest update, adds ability to gift Premium tier

Telegram goes big on emoji in latest update, adds ability to gift Premium tier
After introducing its Premium service two months ago, Telegram announced another major update for its messaging app that puts emoji right and center. A new open emoji platform has just made its way to Telegram, specifically designed to allow anyone to upload custom packs with unique art styles and characters for Telegram Premium users.

All the animated emoji included in the open emoji platform can be included in text messages and media captions. Telegram announced that Premium users will be getting access to 10 initial custom emoji packs, which typically contain more than 500 Premium emoji.

To add new animated emoji to your text message, you have to tap the Emoji button which will open the redesigned emoji panel. From there, you’ll be able to browse your emoji packs or add new ones. All packs are included in emoji suggestions, and even typing a static emoji will show suggestions from all animated packs.

According to Telegram, all users regardless of whether or not they’re paying to the Premium tier can see any animated emoji. More importantly, everyone will be able to use all custom emoji for free in their Saved Messages chat to try them out.

Along with the new open emoji platform, Telegram redesigned the sticker panel on iOS. Long-time users will notice that there are now separate tabs for stickers, GIFs and emoji, exactly like it’s been on the Android, desktop and web apps.

Another important update that’s meant to Premium users only focuses on privacy. A new setting has been added that allows Telegram Premium users to control who is able to send them voice and video messages (i.e. Everyone, My Contacts, or Nobody).

Finally, Telegram users who pay for the Premium tier will now be able to gift their friends or family a prepaid subscription for 3, 6 or 12 months, at a discount. This can be done from the three-dots menu and choosing Gift Premium.

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