Telegram released a new update for Frida,y just a day after Telegram CEO and founder Pavel Durov said the update had been in Apple’s app review for two weeks without explaining the reasons. According to Durov, the update is packed with emoji-related features, but one is missing because Apple specifically asked for it to be removed.
“Following extensive media coverage of my previous post, Apple approached us to reduce the wait for a Telegram update by removing Telemoji, the higher-quality vector-animated versions of standard emoji,” Durov wrote about this in his Telegram channel on Friday. “This is an amazing move on Apple’s part, because Telemoji would bring a whole new dimension to low-res static emoji and greatly enrich their ecosystem.”
You can see the Telemoji in a short video included in Durov’s post (and I made a GIF of the video he shared). Personally, I think Telemoji look like a lot of fun — I love how they bring the static emoji faces I’m familiar with to life. But I guess Apple took issue with another company changing its design in this way, so maybe it asked Telegram to remove Telemoji from the update. Apple and Telegram did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
However, the update is loaded with other new emoji improvements. Users who subscribe to Telegram’s newly launched $4.99 premium service will be able to download and use their own emojis in chats with friends, and Telegram is offering 10 custom packs with more than 500 emojis to start. Free users will be able to see any animated emoji and use them in their saved messages.
Telegram has also updated the sticker bar on iOS, creating separate tabs for stickers, GIFs, and emojis, similar to what you may be familiar with in Telegram on Android, desktop, or the web. You can read the full list of updates here in a Telegram blog post.
There are more improvements on the way. In “a few weeks”, Telegram will allow users to add any custom emoji as a message reaction, – says Durov, though it will be a Premium-only feature to begin with. I believe that the reaction to the emoji are actually good — the more ways to use emoji, the better.