Telegram has more than halved monthly subscription fees for its premium tier in India, just months after the offer was introduced as it tries to aggressively cash in on a large user base in one of its largest markets.
In a message to users in India on Saturday, Telegram said it was making the subscription available in the country at a discount. The monthly subscription now costs customers 179 Indian rupees ($2.2), up from 469 Indian rupees ($5.74) previously. The app’s monthly subscription, called Telegram Premium, costs between $4.99 and $6 in all other markets.
Users who didn’t receive the message also see the new price in the app’s settings section, they said and TechCrunch independently verified.
India is one of the biggest markets for Telegram. The instant messaging app has more than 120 million monthly active users in the country, according to analytics firm data.ai. (An industry executive shared the numbers with TechCrunch.) The figure makes the app the second most popular in its category in the country, just behind WhatsApp, which has courted more than half a billion users. in the South Asian market.
Telegram, which claims to have amassed more than 700 million monthly active users worldwide, introduced the optional subscription offer in June this year in a bid, it hopes, to improve its finances and continue to support a free tier. Premium customers have access to a wide range of additional features such as the ability to follow up to 1,000 channels, send larger files (4 GB) and faster download speeds.
The Dubai-based company joins a list of global tech companies offering their services at a lower cost in India. Apple’s music app charges $1.2 for the individual monthly plan in the country, while Netflix’s deals start from $1.83 in the country.