WhatsApp or Telegram: comparison and differences

Instant messaging is an undeniable part of our lives. Although there are many apps for messaging, WhatsApp and Telegram are among the most used. Therefore, in this article, we explain what you can expect from each of them, what their goals are and what their main functions are.

What WhatsApp and Telegram have in common

When it comes to the user interface, there are many similarities between the two platforms. The basic function of WhatsApp and Telegram is the sending of messages between two users. Therefore, the home screen of both consists of one listing of conversations, without unnecessary additives. These are arranged chronologically with the most recent appearing at the top.


Accessing any conversation, we find that the options are very similar, albeit arranged differently. In WhatsApp we can find shortcuts to functions such as calling and video calling, while in Telegram these are hidden in the top menu options. The lower part is also similar, with a text field and various options for sending content.

Options in chatOptions in chat

The configuration menu offers the same options in both apps. Of course, they are not divided in the same way. However, it is possible to change the behavior of notifications, chats, profile picture or memory usage on both apps. Both even offer direct access to the FAQs and support page.

Start a new interactionStart a new interaction

Back to the start. In both WhatsApp and Telegram there is an opportunity to start a new conversation, as well as to create a group, mailing list or channel. In both cases, it is easy to start new interactions.

Comparison between the configuration menusComparison between the configuration menus

As for security so both have end-to-end encrypted chats. WhatsApp, which uses Open Whisper System encryption, has this feature enabled by default and it cannot be disabled. In the case of Telegram, with a 256-bit AES system, 2048-bit RSA and Diffie-Hellman key exchange, you have to do this from the side menu New Secret Chat click. The two platforms thus share a fundamental function in any instant messaging application that serves to protect user privacy.

End-to-End EncryptionEnd-to-End Encryption

In addition to the transmission of text messages all possible content types are also sent. WhatsApp has already been upgraded to Telegram level and allows to send contacts, files and documents, images, videos or audio files. In addition, both apps allow you to record voice memos and capture videos and photos directly from the application itself. The maximum size of a document in WhatsApp is 100 MB, while in Telegram it is 1.5 GB.

Send files and mediaSend files and media

Regarding the sending of graphic elements, both contain a complete Collection of stickers for free download. They are obtained directly in each app client without having to resort to third-party applications.

Sticker ShopSticker Shop

And lastly, both are distributed in the same form. WhatsApp and Telegram are available in the major app stores such as Google Play and the App Store. Of course, at Malavida we offer you a secure download of the latest version of both applications.

How WhatsApp and Telegram differ

It is clear that there are no big differences in the basic use of WhatsApp and Telegram. However, each app has a number of unique characteristics that set it apart from the rest.

The main difference lies in the structure they work with. WhatsApp doesn’t work in the cloud, but Telegram does. Although both use a data connection to transfer content, in the case of the former, it is only hosted on the sending and receiving device. In contrast, Telegram stores the content in the cloud by default. This affects the user experience because while WhatsApp is only accessible from one place and depends on a specific device, Telegram can be accessed from any computer, phone or tablet with an internet connection. Thus, the dilemma for the user is between privacy and convenience.

In addition, we find some unique properties in both applications. For example, WhatsApp allows you to create states with images, links or videos. Like Instagram stories, status updates are fleeting and disappear after 24 hours.

Create a status on WhatsAppCreate a status on WhatsApp

For its part, Telegram allows the creation of channels, which are even used by government agencies to disseminate information. What’s closest to channels in WhatsApp are the mailing lists. However, the latter tool is much more limited and does not allow users to join voluntarily. As for the limits for groups, Telegram allows a maximum of 100,000 users and WhatsApp only 256.

Create a Telegram channelCreate a Telegram channel

Another important difference is that Telegram allows you to log into multiple accounts at the same time on the same device, while WhatsApp does not.

Add a new Telegram accountAdd a new Telegram account

Finally, let’s not forget that Telegram is an application with a completely open API. Therefore, the clients, official and unofficial, are available on practically every platform. So, we can use the service on iPhone, iPad and Android. Even from the desktop, thanks to its applications for Windows and MacOS. And basically from any Internet-enabled device via its web client, fully functional and without being dependent on a telephone. This is clearly one of Telegram’s strengths over WhatsApp.

WhatsApp vs Telegram: Which one should I use?

After this analysis, it is clear that both applications are perfect for instant messaging. However, WhatsApp is a much more limited app that mainly focuses on interaction between users. Telegram, on the other hand, is a versatile tool that can be used to create not only personal chats, but also sophisticated channels and groups. It is accessible from any device with an internet connection. Despite the possibility of secret chat functionality with end-to-end encryption, user privacy is sacrificed by default in exchange for advanced features.

In short, both platforms are doomed to coexist on the devices of many users who use WhatsApp to connect with friends and family and connect with media, organizations and authorities via Telegram.

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