Messaging app Telegram has announced an-all new update that bumps the app version to 4.0, and brings three major features - Bot Payments, Video messages, and Instant view platform. The messaging app claims that the all-new version 4.0 is the "mother of all Telegram updates."
One of the biggest additions is touted to be the Bot Payments which will allow Telegram users to order goods and services from bots within the app. The bots will also include a Pay button to their messages from where users can pay through credit card and fill in their shipping information to confirm the payment. Telegram adds that if an account is protected by 2-step verification then users will be able to save card details for future purchases.
"If you have Telegram 4.0 (or newer) installed, you can order goods or services from bots that offer them. These bots may now add a Pay button to their messages. When you tap Pay, you'll be asked to fill in your credit card and shipping information and confirm the payment. Then you get what you paid for. Voila," explains Telegram.
Users can try out @ShopBot which is a demo bot as well as @TelegramDonate bot for testing a real payment with actual money.
"Telegram is an open platform, so bot developers can implement the necessary APIs and accept payments from users starting right now, without lengthy approval dramas," adds the team. To recall, Telegram introduced chat bots almost two year back.
Telegram also added video message feature which will let users send video recorded messages by tapping the mic icon to switch to camera mode while in a chat. Users will have to tap and hold the camera icon and record a video message. The video message will be sent one the recording button is released.
"Video messages are so fast because Telegram compresses them and sends them even as you record them. By the way, if holding the button seems like too much work, you can lock the camera in recording mode by swiping up," the team revealed in an announcement blog post.
With Telegram 4.0, the messaging app is also announcing its Instant View platform that will let anyone create their own templates for websites. The new Instant View Platform is a follow-up to the Instant View feature that was released last year. The platform will basically help Telegram to instantly open a website with any connection.
"To generate Instant View pages, our parser bot uses templates - sets of rules that tell the bot where to find useful content and what to ignore on a particular domain or URL. The bot uses these instructions to create a slim and beautiful Instant View representation of the source page," explains the team.
Telegram has also announced a contest for rule makers where the top contender will get $10,000 (roughly Rs. 65 lakh) for describing the most contest domains with their templates.