Telegram Embraces The Super App Model, Following In WeChat’s Footsteps


Telegram, the widely-used messenger app, is taking steps towards becoming a super app and adopting an ecosystem strategy similar to WeChat. By partnering with Tencent Cloud and leveraging the blockchain technology of the TON Foundation, Telegram aims to create a platform where third-party developers can build mini apps to enhance user interactions.

Key Takeaway

Telegram is moving towards an ecosystem strategy, resembling WeChat’s super app model, by creating a platform for third-party developers to build mini apps. By partnering with Tencent Cloud and leveraging the TON blockchain, Telegram aims to offer a decentralized solution that expands its range of services.

Building a Super App Platform

Telegram is working on a platform that allows developers to create flexible interfaces using JavaScript, which can be launched within the app and replace traditional websites. This super app platform will rely on a network of infrastructure partners, including the TON Foundation and Tencent Cloud.

The TON Foundation, an independent organization operating alongside Telegram, has partnered with Tencent Cloud to support TON validators and meet the platform’s high compute intensity and network bandwidth needs. This collaboration will benefit Telegram games built on TON, as Tencent Cloud provides gaming solutions and references cases.

Learning from WeChat

WeChat, the Chinese super app, pioneered the mini app model and offers a wide range of services, including payments, food delivery, e-commerce, and ride-hailing. Telegram’s mini app ecosystem has the potential to reach an even broader user base globally, with a decentralized payments network.

While WeChat’s mini apps primarily cater to Chinese users, developers already using Tencent’s cloud services for WeChat may begin building for Telegram’s international community. Mobile game developers, in particular, already marketing in overseas markets, might find it easier to adapt their skills to Telegram’s platform.

Partnering with Tencent for Insights

By partnering with Tencent, Telegram gains insights into enticing users to employ the messenger for various purposes. WeChat’s in-house payments system played a crucial role in the app’s success, and Telegram has integrated with 20 different payment solutions. Additionally, Telegram recently introduced a self-custodial wallet developed by the TON blockchain, enabling a wide range of transactions in regions without centralized online payments.

It will be fascinating to see how Telegram and TON learn from WeChat’s success and navigate the challenges of creating a mini app platform with a decentralized twist.

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