Telegram targets 1bn active monthly users with one year

Alex Omenye
Alex Omenye

The billionaire founder of the Telegram messaging app, Pavel Durov has said the platform is poised to surpass one billion active monthly users within a year, likening its growth to a “forest fire.”

Durov made these remarks on Tuesday, emphasizing Telegram’s rapid expansion as one of the most popular social media platforms.

Durov, who founded Telegram in Dubai after leaving Russia in 2014 due to disagreements over censorship demands, expressed confidence in the platform’s trajectory. In an interview with U.S. journalist Tucker Carlson posted on the X social media platform, Durov stated, “We’ll probably cross one billion monthly active users within a year now.” With 900 million active users currently, Telegram is gaining momentum globally.

Despite pressure from some governments, Durov asserted that Telegram should remain a “neutral platform” and avoid involvement in geopolitics. He emphasized the importance of maintaining neutrality even as the platform’s popularity continues to soar.

Telegram faces competition from Meta’s WhatsApp, which boasts over two billion monthly active users. Reports suggest that Telegram may pursue a U.S. listing once it achieves profitability.

With its significant influence in the former Soviet Union republics, Telegram ranks among the major social media platforms globally, alongside giants like Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp, Instagram, TikTok, and WeChat.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, Telegram has become a primary source of uncensored information about the conflict. Durov conceived the idea for an encrypted messaging app as a means of communication while facing pressure in Russia. He left Russia to maintain his independence and has since navigated various locations for his company, settling on the United Arab Emirates due to its neutrality.

Durov highlighted the challenges posed by major competitors like Apple and Google in terms of freedom of speech, noting their ability to censor content on smartphones. Despite these challenges, he remains committed to Telegram’s role as a platform for diverse ideas and perspectives.

Beyond financial wealth, Durov emphasized his desire for personal freedom, eschewing major possessions like real estate, jets, or yachts. His priority is to maintain independence and ensure Telegram remains a platform for open communication and expression.

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