The Bitcoin Dark Horse that is Telebit
With Dark Android, and encrypted communications in general, the fact that I’m a fan of the cross-platform app Telegram is no secret (and it’s not a failure in its algorithm that it isn’t a secret, I just talk about it that much). And if you want to know, my Telegram handle/username is: “@Sovryn”. I’m sure that doesn’t surprise anyone.
In my opinion, for Dark Android’s purposes, it is the premier ease-of-use and feature-rich app for messaging that can be downloaded right from the F-Droid app repository. No need to list off the features here again, as they are pretty much endless (and you can read the Dark Android main page for more).
Also, Telegram does have a hidden “weapon” that most other messaging apps do not: Bitcoin integration. Now, this isn’t something it has natively, it is a feature that is added by the developers at Telebit, and largely, it works pretty well, and the commands are pretty simple. I’ve received donations for my work on Sovryn Tech via Telebit, and was able to extract the Bitcoin to a hot wallet pretty easily. But perhaps the need to use a wallet outside of Telebit is about to change…
As you can see from the above screenshot, Telebit is going to be releasing a sister app on Android for Telegram that allows for even easier use of Telebit via the messaging platform. The ability to send things over an encrypted messaging platform is exciting on its own, and for Telebit to have an open API and its own app within which others could work and develop makes it very exciting (and hopefully they will be releasing it in the F-Droid app repository). In my opinion, depending on how all of this shapes up, Telebit has the opportunity to be top-class and feature-rich Bitcoin hot wallet that would put others like Gliph to shame. All of this makes Bitcoin all the more viable as an anonymous payment system that it was once claimed to be, or if anything it is a test case of what perhaps even more DAPS-minded cryptocurrencies could take advantage of. There are millions of Telegram users, and that’s a pretty good-sized infrastructure and network of users to connect some little known future cryptocurrency to.
And perhaps more interesting is what this says about Telegram as more than just a messenger, but as a software platform and how something can become a platform. “Platform” is a Silicon Valley buzzword right now, with Facebook trying to turn its own Messenger into a platform (“platform” meaning other companies develop side-apps to work with the main app, which is exactly what Telebit’s app is going to be doing with Telegram), and many others hoping for the same. How ironic that none of these apps–which have massive userbases compared to Telegram–had yet to find something really groundbreaking to use their messaging platform…but the one app that didn’t advertise as being a platform and didn’t ask for anyone to work with it has come up with one of the most groundbreaking ideas of all.
How did this happen? What did Telegram do so right that Facebook and others got so wrong? In my opinion, it’s simple. Telegram made itself widely available across platforms, is open-source, and has the right attitude (their attitude being: your communications are your business, not ours). Elements like these inspire people to innovate and turn something into a platform even if it was never meant to be. I wouldn’t be shocked if ol’ Pavel Durov (creator of Telegram and well-known anarchist) doesn’t decide to work with Telebit on a far more direct and official level. Either way, I look forward to the future release of Telebit’s sister app.
In the end, the thing that makes Dark Android possible, the crypto-economy that is the natural result of the Snowden Revelations, is looking brighter every day.