Sat. Oct 23rd, 2021

Telegram has overtaken WhatsApp, Facebook, Tiktok to become the most downloaded non-gaming app worldwide in January 2021. The report also suggests that Indians downloaded the app more than any other country globally, followed by Indonesia. 

According to the data released by Sensor Tower, Telegram saw 63 million installs, which is three times more than the number of installs in January 2020. Out of 63 million installs, India contributed the highest 24% while Indonesia was the second-largest contributor with 10%. The data is based on the total number of downloads on both the App Store and Play Store between January 1, 2021, to January 31, 2021. 

Telegram has grown exponentially in one month, climbing from 9th position in December 2020 to the first position in one month. It has also entered the list of ten most downloaded non-gaming apps on the iOS’ App Store securing the fourth position. 

TikTok, despite restrictions in major markets like India and the USA, was the second most installed non-gaming apps after Telegram with around 62 million installs. The other three apps in the top five most installed apps were Singal, Facebook and WhatsApp.

WhatsApp controversy: A boon for other messaging apps

To put things in perspective, when WhatsApp started notifying users of its new privacy policy update in January. The controversy around WhatsApp’s updated privacy policy led to mass user migration from the platform to other messaging apps like Telegram and Signal. The two apps also use end-to-end encryption like WhatsApp and are a direct competitor to the Facebook-owned app.

WhatsApp introduced new changes to its privacy policy on January 6 where it detailed how it is working with Facebook to bring shopping features to the app soon. The Facebook-owned messaging app received massive backlash from its users, and later, the Indian government also questioned WhatsApp for its disparity in privacy policy between European and Indian users. As a result, The rollout of the new privacy policy was deferred to May 15, which initially, was set to take effect from February 8. Recently, the Indian government has written to WhatsApp chief Will Cathcart to withdraw its new privacy policy. The release of the update is still murky, and it remains to be seen whether this will have a further impact on WhatsApp’s lately-receding user base.

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