Telegram Gets First Update After Six Week App Store Lockout


Telegram today received its first update in two months after an App Store update lockout caused by a dispute with the Russian government and Apple.

Telegram CEO Pavel Durov yesterday explained that Apple had been blocking updates to the Telegram app on a worldwide scale since April, when the Telegram app was banned in Russia.

As back story, Russia in April banned Telegram because Telegram refused to allow government officials in the country to have backdoor access to the content of user messages. Russia's ban attempt was not entirely successful, leading Russia to demand that Apple remove Telegram from the Russian App Store.

Amid this dispute, Apple was apparently refusing all Telegram app updates dating back to mid-April. This situation caused certain Telegram features, like stickers, to break with the launch of iOS 11.4, and it prevented Telegram from complying with new GDPR rules in the European Union. From Durov's statement yesterday:

While Russia makes up only 7% of Telegram's userbase, Apple is restricting updates for all Telegram users around the world since mid-April. As a result, we've also been unable to fully comply with GDPR for our EU-users by the deadline of May 25, 2018. We are continuing our efforts to resolve the situation and will keep you updated.

Apple appears to have reversed its position on Telegram updates, and Telegram 4.8.2 is now available in the iOS App Store. The update includes a new registration process for the EU and UK along with some other small changes to the app.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
30 months ago

Oh noes, what will the conspiracy theorists do now??

An update has been held for months. Because this, feautures have been broken and telegram didn’t comply with the new European regulation within the given deadline. This app has million of users! An update finally gets released but we don’t know if this is a one case exception or if the situation is back to normality. And, we get zero (0, nothing nulla, nada, 何も) explanation from Apple about the reasons behind its behaviour. And you think this is ok? After having some bad pr apple let telegram have an update. How many apps that don’t have millions of users are never allowed an update (maybe) because of political pressure? We have no idea. If you want another example, think that Iranian developers have been completely excluded from software development on iOS, and their apps removed and that in China people completely lost access to VPN software and, therefore, to the free internet (and to free press), but only on iOS, on Android, you can sideload apps...if you don’t see the issue, nothing will be able to make you see, no matter what happens in the future. And good job on calling names on people worried about the situation. “Conspiracy theorists”, bah.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
30 months ago
In case anybody was wondering, the 4.8.2 update is also listed in the Russian App Store.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
30 months ago

An update has been held for months.

Most likely it was a typical cycle of App Store submission - submit app update, get rejection, fix error(s), repeat. It wasn’t a single update that was held for months.

And, we get zero (0, nothing nulla, nada, 何も) explanation from Apple about the reasons behind its behaviour. And you think this is ok?

Apple is not supposed to do this! It’s the most basic part of a business relationship - only devs should get the rejection reasons.

Otherwise we’d probably hear something along the lines of ‘Telegram developers are *****’. And even if that would have helped Apple PR-wise, they know better than break confidentiality.

After having some bad pr apple let telegram have an update.

Most likely the bad publicity led Apple to tell Telegram’s developers how to fix their app to get it past the review process.

If you want another example, think that Iranian developers have been completely excluded from software development on iOS, and their apps removed and that in China people completely lost access to VPN software and, therefore, to the free internet (and to free press)

Apple follows the local law - hence in US it is subject to sanctions on Iran and in China it is subject to VPN ban.

but only on iOS, on Android, you can sideload apps...

If you an advanced user, you can sideload on iOS as well.

And good job on calling names on people worried about the situation. “Conspiracy theorists”, bah.

When people jump to the least likely conclusion of some hidden conspiracy by Apple - yes, that’s who they are.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
30 months ago

You'd make for a biased, opinionated judge and jury.

The only thing I’m biased against is a paranoid anti-Apple attitudes in MacRumors comments.

Fact is that an update was held up. There is no way for us to know if it was single or multiple, and whose fault, unless screenshots and emails are shared. Come on, man! Be open!

Open to what? To ‘let’s assume the worst’ mindset?
In fact, Telegram devs themselves spoken of multiple updates being rejected. And they have a history of seeing persecution everywhere.

Telegram is not a new kid on the block in app development. Give them some credit.

No credit here - there’s plenty of criticism of their work, including their cryptography. And it takes one bad hire to screw up the app.

Or is it that this is a Russian developer that is an issue with you?

Oh, here we go.

Just a clarification - I’m Russian myself, living in the West, rather anti-Putin and anti-current regime.

However that also means that I know enough about Durov and his company to be sceptical about their statements on Apple.

I don’t think sanctions on those countries include such things at all

Maybe google it first then? Both of those things are facts.

Also, a couple of points:
- Apple has to obey the local laws - no matter how ****** they are.
- US sanctions on Iran apply to entire country, not just the government.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
30 months ago

This changes things! No wonder then. :) A native would know things more than any outsider could.

Please don't accept innuendo as evidence. Knows enough about Durov? Sounds so ominous, doesn't it? :rolleyes: Well hell, we can do that too. <clears throat> "You see macintoshmac, in my capacity as an internet commenter on several sites, I've become privy to certain aspects of Durov's personality traits. When examined against the context of this recent tiff with Apple... let's just say, Durov isn't what he seems to be." See. Anybody can do that and I've never even been to Russia.:p
Being a native doesn't necessarily impart insider knowledge. Do you know more about the CEO of AT&T than someone from Canada? Any insights into the Walmart E-Suite that a Mexican wouldn't have? How do you feel about the activity of Bank of America's CEO? An inquiring mind from Australia wants to know.:D

Being from Russia gives no more insight than being from Georgia would give me insight into the peach industry.:) Futurix's supposition about what happened between Apple and Telegram is just that, supposition. He has a bias towards defending Apple. There's nothing wrong with that. He has no more insight that you, me, or the guy selling bags of oranges by the freeway off ramp.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
30 months ago

Oh noes, what will the conspiracy theorists do now??

You tell us.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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