What do we want in WhatsApp: Telegram voice chats

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In a WhatsApp chat, if you don’t feel like typing, you can send an audio note or start a voice call. But what if there was something in between, more than an audio but without being a call? Well, Telegram, the messaging app that always innovates before WhatsApp, has found it: Voice Chats.

Telegram News: December Patch

Just in time for Christmas, Telegram has released the monthly patch of updates for its application. And these are its news:

Voice chats

Any Telegram group can now become an always-on voice chat room. Voice chats work in parallel with existing text and multimedia communication, adding a layer of live ephemeral chats to the group. They can be used as virtual office spaces for “teams or informal lounges for any community”, such as virtual family gatherings these days around Christmas.

While voice chats are not group calls, they can accomplish similar goals, while also offering flexibility rather than old-school scheduling. In larger groups, they also give random opportunities to talk to people.

Groups with active voice chats have a special bar at the top that shows who is currently speaking (and even how loud they speak). This can help you choose the perfect time to join. And when you’re done, you can move freely through the app, review conversations, and send messages. You will stay connected to the chat and the microphone controls will remain on screen so you can mute or speak whenever you want.

If you’re using Android, you can fully enjoy the voice chat experience with a system-wide floating widget that shows your microphone controls and who’s currently speaking, even when Telegram is in the background.

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You can chat with whoever is online or invite more people from one menu. Voice chats can hold several thousand participants, which means they work for everything from a consultation with family members while you are shopping to a massive live event.

To create a voice chat and discover your own way of using it, open the profile of any group that you are an administrator for, tap (⋯) or (⋮) and choose the Start voice chat option.

Like the Telegram groups before them, “we hope that voice chats will change the way people collaborate and stay in touch. In the coming weeks, we’ll polish them further, listening to your feedback, improving noise suppression, and adding more features like video and screen sharing. ”

Push to talk shortcuts

In Telegram Desktop and in the native app for macOS, you can configure a push-to-talk key in voice chats, to control your microphone even if Telegram is not in focus.

Sticker outlines

Telegram’s animated stickers are optimized for efficiency and offer “smooth animations at 180 frames with infinite resolution in less than 50 KB”. With today’s update, the stickers load even faster than before and show an outline of what you will soon be able to see.

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