If you’re still contemplating on whether to use Telegram or Signal after all the crazy WhatsApp debacle, then you’re not alone in this. Thousands, possibly millions, are having this thought. Many will likely just use whatever tool their friends are using, but you are not like that.
Signal vs Telegram comparison
To help your decision making, we’ve decided to discuss which of the two apps between Signal and Telegram are the best for chatting with friends and families. Now, one is not truly better than the other, but one is clearly more private, though it might depend on how you look at things.
At the end of the day, no matter which one of these tools you choose to use, you can make chat safe from prying eyes with the right knowledge.
- What makes Signal and Telegram similar
- Which tool is better for privacy
- Are these open-source tools
- What sets Telegram apart where privacy is not concerned
- OK, so which of Telegram and Signal is better
Let us discuss this in more detail.
What makes Signal and Telegram similar?
Well, they are not owned by a big technology company, so if you are nervous about Big Tech, then these two should be right up your alley. Still, we should point out that a non-profit company owns Signal, while Telegram is owned by a company that requires profit.
We’re not sure how long Signal can stay as a non-profit because its userbase is growing, which means all things will become more expensive than ever.
As for Telegram, we know that the company behind it isn’t making much from the app, but it plans to add paid features in the future. Not only that, but the company is looking into including advertisements in Channels this year.
The good news is, however, is that private chats will stay ad-free, which is a good thing, at least from our point of view.
When it comes down to which platforms Telegram and Signal are available on, well, you can find them on Android, iOS, and Windows. Just keep in mind that Signal on Windows will require you to have the app installed on your smartphone. Telegram on the desktop is an independent tool from the smartphone app.
Read: WhatsApp vs Telegram vs Signal vs Messenger.
Which chat app is better for privacy?
Determining which one of the two apps is best for privacy is a bit complicated, though, for some, this is straightforward.
You see, from the moment you install and begin to use Signal, the app is taking your privacy seriously, so there is nothing to change to make things happen. Every communication via the app is protected via end-to-end encryption between each device, which means no one, not even the company behind Signal, can read your messages. Signal uses an advanced end to end encryption protocol that provides privacy for every message every time.
On the other hand, Telegram offers end-to-end encryption between devices but does not make this feature the default option. You will be required to create a Secret Chat to make sure no one can read your messages. Secret Chats work only between two devices and they do not extend to groups, unless manually selected. There are ways, though, to improve Privacy and Security on Telegram.
Now, if you’re not using the Secret Chat feature, your messages are still encrypted, but this is done via Telegram servers, so there is a chance for the company to read your messages.
In terms of having a Secret Chat in a group, Telegram does not offer this option at all. The group chat is encrypted for sure, but via Telegram servers only.
Telegram will backup messages to their servers, but these may be stored in a non-encrypted format. Signal, by its very nature, offers no backups.
The upside of having Telegram servers encrypt your messages is the fact that you can easily synchronize all messages across any device. You can do this with Signal, of course, but since the content is stored on the device, synchronization is done via device-to-device.
If you lose your smartphone, then your Signal messages go with it forever, and we doubt a lot of users will want to have that happen to them. Still, if privacy is the most important aspect of your life, Signal is the clear winner.
Both offer Disappearing Messages.
Are these open-source tools?
Yes, but yet again, Signal takes the winning card here for being more open than Telegram. From what we can tell, the Signal app along with the Signal servers are open source, and as such, the code is viewable via GitHub. Where Telegram is concerned, the app is open-source with viewable code, but the servers are not.
What sets Telegram apart where privacy is not concerned?
As stated above, Telegram saves your messages to the cloud by default; therefore, you can access them from any device, even on the web through a web browser. Furthermore, the app supports having a group with up to 200,000 subscribers.
Not only that, but users can install bots in Telegram to improve usability. While these Telegram bots are cool, some may not view them as very useful in the grand scheme of things.
Telegram looks smarter and offers better emoticons as compared to Signal.
OK, so which of Telegram and Signal is better?
Both are much better than WhatsApp in terms of privacy, that is evident. However, if you relish privacy than everything else, then Signal is your best bet. For those who want privacy along with better features, then Telegram should be your app of choice. Just know that the company behind the app could read your messages unless you activate Secret Chat.
- Want Total Privacy, then go for Signal
- Want Privacy + Features, then go for Telegram.
Which one would you recommend?