Telegram Revenue and Usage Statistics (2024)

Mansoor Iqbal

Updated: May 24, 2024

Telegram is a cloud-based instant messaging service, which offers multimedia messages, voice and video calls, similar to Facebook Messenger.

It was founded by Nikolai and Pavel Durov in 2013, founders of Russian social media platform VK (the largest in its domestic market). Initially headquartered in St Petersburg, the Telegram team has repeatedly changed jurisdiction to evade problematic regulations. The operation is currently headquartered in Dubai, after stints in London (where it is legally registered), Berlin and Singapore.

Telegram was created with a view to challenging the primacy of WhatsApp. It differs from the latter in allowing users to access accounts from multiple devices, and Telegram has focused on being the anti-Facebook in terms of encryption and regulations. Its makers claim that its multi-data centre infrastructure and encryption makes it more secure than its Facebook-owned rival.

Users are able to have ‘secret chats’, which see messages stored on devices as opposed to the cloud. Messages can also be set to self-destruct, akin to Snapchat.

When users are looking for a secure service, Telegram seems to be where they defect. We saw this in 2013 when surveillance fears were raised around Kakao Talk in South Korea, and again in 2019 during the Hong Kong protests against the Chinese government. Belarus and Ukraine have both seen Telegram usage increase over the past few years.

Telegram uses an open API, and welcomes developers to create their own Telegram apps. Samsung took advantage of this, launching its short-lived Socializer Messenger in 2015. Developers are also invited to create bots and users can create sticker sets. As well as sending messages, users can subscribe to ‘channels’, which allow creators to send messages to subscribers.

Telegram does not sell ads, stating that the access to personal data gained by advertisers would go against its ethos. Funding thus far comes privately from Pavel Durov, although it has launched a premium service to try and keep the company afloat independent of the creator’s funds.

Telegram operates in relatively secrecy, and emphasises its commitment to freedom from market pressures as well as from any nationally-imposed constraints. This has made it a very popular tool in certain parts of the world, with 800 million monthly active users.

We have collected data and statistics on Telegram. Read on below to find out more.

Telegram Key Statistics

  • Telegram generated $45 million in 2023, primarily through its Premium service
  • Telegram has 800 million monthly active users
  • Telegram is the most popular messaging app in Iran and Uzbekistan
  • Telegram has been downloaded more than two billion times, with 420 million downloads in 2023 alone
  • Over 15 billion messages were sent daily on the app in 2016

Telegram Overview

Title 1Title 2
Launch dateAugust 2013
HQLondon, UK (legal); Dubai, UAE (operational)
PeoplePavel Durov (cofounder, CEO), Nikolai Durov (co-founder)
Business typePrivate
IndustrySocial networking

Telegram Revenue

Telegram has started generating revenue through its Premium service, which allows users to join more channels, download at faster speeds, and have access to premium stickers and reactions.

Telegram annual revenue 2022 to 2023 ($mm)

YearRevenue ($mm)
202210
202345

Note: Revenue is an estimate based on Premium subscribers

Telegram Users

Telegram reached 800 million active users in 2023, making it one of the most popular messaging platforms in the world.

Telegram annual users 2014 to 2023 (mm)

YearUsers (mm)
201435
201550
201680
2017150
2018200
2019300
2020400
2021550
2022700
2023800

Sources: Telegram, TechCrunch, Mashable

Telegram Users by Region

Telegram’s largest market is India, which accounts for more than 20% of its userbase. Telegram also has a large amount of users in countries with heavy censorship and surveillance, such as Iran, Russia, and Uzbekistan.

Telegram users by region 2022 (mm)

RegionPercentage of users
Asia38
Europe27
Latin America21
MEMA8

Source: Telegram

Telegram Downloads

Telegram surpassed one billion downloads in 2022, with 420 million downloads that year alone. Facebook changing privacy settings on WhatsApp caused a massive spike in Telegram downloads in January 2021.

Telegram cumulative downloads 2014 to 2023 (mm)

YearDownloads (mm)
2014100
2015130
2016180
2017250
2018340
2019515
2020840
20211270
20221650
20232070

Sources: AppMagic, Sensor Tower

Telegram FAQ

How many users subscribe to Telegram Premium?

In January 2023, Telegram announced it had reached one million premium subscribers (TechCrunch)

How many users are added to Telegram every day?

In April 2020, Telegram was adding 1.5 million new users daily

How many Iranians use Telegram?

Before the ban, 50 million Telegram users were based in Iran. It is unclear how many have continued to use the app after (BBC)

How many Uzbek’s use Telegram?

Telegram has over 18 million users in Uzbekistan (Khikmatilla Ubaydullaev)

How many people downloaded Telegram during the Hong Kong protests?

Telegram saw a 323% year-on-year increase in first-time installs during the July 2019 protests (Sensor Tower)

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