Telegram has introduced a new feature called Payments 2.0 in its latest update with Bot API v.5.2, extending the feature to any chat, including Groups and Channels. The app has upgraded the mass audio broadcasting feature in Voice Chats 2.0 (which was launched last month) to improve engagement among users and help the admins to manage conversations easily. Telegram has added Scheduling capabilities to the platform with on-time Voice Chat reminders, and Mini profiles for Voice Chats, for users to seamlessly check with whom they are chatting without leaving the Voice Chat window. Additionally, it has rolled out features such as Pinch to Zoom and Improved Video Player to enhance the overall chat experience.
Telegram allowed the merchants to accept credit card payments in any private chats with users, Groups and Channels through 8 different integrated third- party payment providers. This include the names such as Stripe, Yandex. Money, Sberbank, Tranzzo, Payme, CLICK, LiqPay, ECOMMPAY. This payment feature is currently available in 200 different countries, and India is one of these. The company is planning to further extend this feature to other countries, as well.
Merchants who are interested in this feature needs to create a basic bot that provides Goods and Services to the users. Merchant bots can send specially formatted invoice messages to users, groups or channels. Buyers can also add a tip amount if they are happy with the merchant. Payments can now be made from any app – including desktop apps.
This is a free and privacy-conscious platform – Telegram takes no commission, and stores no payment information. Credit card information is sent directly to the payment provider and shipping information is shared with the merchant so they can send you your goods. Merchants can directly start using the payments API as they don’t need any prior approvals from Telegram. Developers interested in integrating payments can find all the details in the Payments Manual.
Voice Chats 2.0 – Scheduling, Reminders and Mini Profiles
Now admins can easily schedule a Voice Chat for a particular date and time in any Channels or Telegram Groups. This overall help to set a theme of the conversation, and promote it accordingly. This also gives the community members and other speakers to prepare for the same in advance. Users will see a colourful countdown at the top of the chat. Users who are unable to see the countdown can opt to receive a notification when the voice chat starts. Mini profiles helps to quickly change the picture and bio without leaving the voice chat window. It helps to identify the basic profile of the person you are chatting with during the Voice Chat session.
Admins can schedule a Voice Chat from their Group or Channel’s profile page. On Android, tap ⋮ > Start Voice chat > Schedule Voice Chat. On iOS, tap the Voice Chat button and select Schedule Voice Chat.
Two Newer web versions – Telegram Web K and Web Z
Telegram has introduced two new web versions which are fully featured including animated stickers, dark mode, chat folders, etc. These versions are incredibly efficient, requires no installation, and standalone (multiple- device accessibility) like all the other Telegram app versions.
Direct Download – For Mobile versions
This new update is already available for download on the Apple iOS Store. Users can download Telegram for Android directly from telegram.org. Apps installed from the website will automatically update to the latest version. Users are likely to get new versions several days or weeks faster this way because you won’t have to wait for updates to be reviewed by the store. Telegram supports reproducible builds, so you can always be sure that the app you have on your device was built from the exact same open source code that is published on GitHub.
Improved Features – Animations and Video Player
Pinch to Zoom allows users to directly zoom a picture from the chat, they don’t need to click on the same and wait till it gets open with the media viewer. This slightly fasten up the process and make it a seamless experience.
Users can now easily rewind or fast-forward the videos playing on their iOS and Android devices. On iOS, u press and hold the + or – 15s buttons to fast-forward and rewind. On
Android press and hold on the right or left side of the screen to do the same, and double-tap to jump 10 seconds in either direction.
The Android app gets smoother and more dynamic with the new animations when opening the side menu or swiping back to the chat list from a chat.
Now Get 24×7 Services on Airtel Thanks App
Airtel will continue to provide all essential services to its customers 24×7 even during the lockdown. In Telangana, the services will be available from 6 am to 10 am in Andhra Pradesh from 6 am to 12 Noon at all retail outlets and Airtel stores in compliance with Covid protocols.
Airtel has made recharging all its services distance-friendly to encourage safe social distancing and in hopes to ease your self-quarantining efforts. The Airtel Thanks App allows you to manage as well as recharge all your Airtel connections without having to step out of your home. This includes, prepaid plan, DTH connection, data card, post-paid bills etc. Here’s how you can do it
To recharge on the Airtel Thanks App, follow these easy steps:
Step 1: Install the Airtel Thanks App
Step 2: Click on the ‘Recharge’ tab. Pick the service – mobile, internet, DTH – that you want to recharge.
Step 3: Enter your registered mobile number or DTH account number
Step 4: Select your preferred pack
Step 5: Pay online with your debit or credit card, UPI account, or Amazon pay account
Airtel Thanks app also lets you make other transactions securely from your phone such as paying electricity and water bills, transferring money to someone etc. This is Airtel’s bid to make the lockdown easier for you. You can do the same for someone else who cannot do it themselves, such as your house help, watchman or even an elderly in the nerighbourhood. Stay safe. Stay connected.
Paytm Rolls Out New Features for Its COVID-19 Vaccine Finder
Paytm announced that over 1.5 million citizens have registered for the COVID-19 Vaccine Finder on its Mini App store. The platform helps citizens to check the availability of slots for a specific date by individually entering different PIN codes or district details along with age group (18+ or 45+). The company said that it has now launched more advanced filtering options for its Vaccine Finder that help the user to generate personalised leads including information such as the type of vaccine available and the fee charged for it.
The Vaccine Finder helps citizens research between Covishield, Covaxin & decide on the best suitable option for them. The Vaccine Finder is now available in 11 regional languages enabling almost everyone across the country to seamlessly book slots for vaccination. It has witnessed users from over 730 plus districts registering to find vaccine slots.
The company said that over the last few days the vaccine service has empowered citizens across the country to book slots, enabling maximum numbers of citizens to initiate the process of getting vaccinated in a timely manner.
Paytm spokesperson said, “We are extremely humbled by how our vaccine finder is helping citizens book slots in a timely manner. With the right use of technology and strategy put in place by authorities, we are optimistic about steering our country clear of the second wave of the pandemic. We believe that with the combined efforts of Government, organizations, and citizens, we are on the right track to recovery.”
Paytm Offering Payment Gateway Services at Zero Transaction Fees to NGOs
Paytm announced that it is offering its Payment Gateway services at 0% transaction fees to all registered NGOs across the country, in an effort to help them secure maximum resources for swift, seamless, and smooth Covid Relief work. This service would be applicable on donations of up to Rs. 10 lakh. This move will help NGOs save lakhs of rupees in transaction fees, which they would be able to use for providing more aid and relief to those affected by the pandemic.
To help NGOs immediately start accepting all forms of digital payments, the company is offering instant account activation and same-day settlement facility along with zero charges on setup and maintenance. During these unprecedented times, the company wants to ensure that NGOs that are tirelessly working to help those affected by the pandemic by providing food, medicines, oxygen cylinders do not have to wait for 2-3 days to receive contributions made to them by aware citizens and companies. With the Paytm Payment Gateway NGOs are able to get the funds the same day so that they can immediately put the resources to good use.
The company is already offering its payment gateway services to few of the largest NGOs in the country who are doing commendable work in helping people during the pandemic. It is aiding several small NGOs in tier-II, tier-III and beyond cities to start accepting contributions digitally so that they have adequate funds. Over the last several weeks, the Paytm Payment Gateway has seen a 400% increase in donations to NGOs via its payment gateway.
Paytm Spokesperson said, “NGOs have always been an integral part of social welfare in India. During this ongoing pandemic, they have played an important role in helping millions of citizens get access to food, healthcare, monetary support among other things. We want to do our part in helping them perform their services better by ensuring that they are able to seamlessly, smoothly and immediately get access to funds. Our aim is to help NGOs serve millions of more people and contribute in saving many more lives.”
Paytm recently announced that Paytm Foundation will be setting up oxygen plants in 12-13 cities as hospitals across pan-India face oxygen shortage amid the tumultuous second Covid-19 wave. These oxygen plants would be directly installed at hospitals, which would serve the oxygen needs for the entire hospital. Paytm Foundation, in association with AIF, Act foundation and Elevation Capital is sourcing Oxygen Concentrators that would be sent to government hospitals, COVID care facilities, private hospitals, nursing homes among others.
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