Telegram's CEO, Pavel Durov, revealed that the messaging app plans to introduce a Stories feature in early July. The feature has been highly sought after by users for years, with over half of all feature requests received by Telegram related to Stories. The company initially resisted adding Stories, given their ubiquity across other platforms, but eventually chose to respond to user demand.
Telegram's Stories feature will allow users to control the visibility of each of their stories, deciding whether they're accessible to everyone, their contacts, selected contacts, or a list of close friends. Stories will be situated in an expandable section at the top of the user's chat list, and users can hide Stories posted by any contact by relocating them to the "Hidden" list in their Contacts section.
The Stories feature will also offer users the ability to add captions and links to their Stories, as well as tag others. Users will be able to post photos and videos taken simultaneously with the front and rear cameras in a style similar to BeReal. Furthermore, users can dictate when their story expires – after six, 12, 24, or 48 hours, or they can choose to permanently display Stories on their profile page akin to Instagram's Story highlights feature.
With the ability to save stories to the profile page, Durov believes that Telegram profiles will become more vibrant and informative. This will not only allow users to discover more content from their closest contacts but also learn more about users they interact with in groups or channel comments. Additionally, channels are expected to gain more exposure and subscribers with the ability to repost messages from channels to stories, making going viral on Telegram considerably easier.
After internal testing, even the skeptics within the Telegram team started to appreciate the Stories feature, finding it hard to envision the messaging service without it. Durov expects the new feature to usher in a new era on Telegram, transforming the platform into a more social space. Stories are currently in the final stages of testing and will be officially launched in early July.