Why isn't Telegram web-first?

I have never been a Telegram user apart from one occasion when I just tried it out.

Does it actually offer any primary functionality that couldn’t be covered by a pure web app?

That said, is there any technical necessity for it to be a native app (either mobile or desktop) first, and only be a web app as a linked dependant?

I understand such a necessity for apps that need to access the location/GPS/camera etc. for their primary functionality (e.g. Uber, or even WhatsApp because it uses cell phone numbers as the primary user ID).

But Telegram, if I understand what it does correctly, is basically a messenger + blog platform. Whereas being a native mobile app is certainly the most convenient form for a messenger, I can’t see why it is necessarily necessary — given that attaching to a cell phone number isn’t mandatory like it is for WhatsApp (is it?).

This seemingly unnecessary aspiration to be a native app first (vs web app) has always raised in me this suspicion. Web apps technically can’t be intrusive any close to the extent that native apps can. It is being able to intrude, being able to potentially spy on the user that is apparently why Telegram requires to install its native app before it can be used in its web form. I don’t see any other plausible explanation. Am I missing one?

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Some IM requiere phone number to address for operate like Whatapp, Telegram, Signal, some IM requiere an email to log in, like XMPP,Etc, some GNU+P2P IM doe not require anything to operate.
Personally i not trust on Signal, whatapp, Telegram clients or native, worse on android in general.

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Never tried Signal, but Telegram substantially differs from WhatsApp in that it:

  • doesn’t require you to know the phone number of a user to contact them: just a nickname address is required, correct?
  • is substantially purported to be a publication platform, not just messenger

That said, unlike WhatsApp, Telegram seems to be requiring a phone number just for spam mitigation (and, perhaps, to collect personal data) rather than as means of addressing the user.

Is correct that in Telegram just it need the @nickname to messenger.
I not sure if same in Whatapp, i never used.

As concluded: “Hence, users seriously concerned about privacy must be educated about the correct procedure to follow.

Yes, I’ve noticed this behavior while installed one native variant (https://telegram.org/android), last year I think, to someone that I care about, as somebody kindly requested (yet removed this app just after few days of receiving or even constant receiving of non-requested “publications”).

Not that I’m aware of and therefore think that this post belongs here (might be of your interest):

Honestly I am never sure at which point the phone number gets shared. Yes, you can find people by nick, buy I think at some point when you add somebody to contacts it seems that this implies trust and shares your phone number with the person you added.
I might be mistaken.

I believe you are. You can choose who sees your phone number and who doesn’t, and you can choose to be notified if your contacts join Telegram. So maybe not entirely mistaken, as the latter does share your number, albeit ostensibly with people you’ve already shared it with. However, as far as Telegram is concerned, that is the only reason to even provide your number, so you can provide a fake number and still get full functionality out of the app. It may just be that you overlap with someone else if you do, and I don’t know what happens in that situation.

Doesn’t it verify the number by SMS on sign up? I think it did when I tried it out some 15 months ago.

That I don’t recall, I signed up in I think 2017.

Yeah, it seems that it does, so never mind what I said.