The service will roll out to a few at first:
Today we’re rolling out Voice Calls in Western Europe. The rest of the world will get them very soon as well.
Telegram has billed itself as a more secure messaging app than its competitors. It’s not immune to hackers — we watched them hijack Telegram in real-time before. But it says that its voice calls will have the same end-to-end encryption its text messages do.
Calls even have their own adorable key exchange mechanism: you can tell your call is secure if you and your callee have the same four emoji on your screen. I challenge anyone using it to come up with a short story based on their emoji.
Telegram also says that its voice calls will have an AI neural network to optimize call quality. So Telegram will adjust the quality of the call based on the stability of the connection. For example, it says calls will “use less data when you walk into a refrigerator with bad reception.”
I don’t know how many people Telegram thinks are walking into refrigerators, but at least it’s planned for that contingency.