TON price doubles as Telegram to share ad revenue with users

Telegram, the popular messaging app with around 800 million users, has introduced a new incentive program that enables owners of public channels on its platform to earn 50% of the advertisement revenue in Toncoin (TON), the project’s native cryptocurrency. To qualify for this revenue-sharing model, channels must boast a minimum of 1,000 subscribers.


This initiative was first hinted at by Telegram’s founder and CEO Pavel Durov in February 2024, and it comes with the introduction of the Telegram Ad Platform, which is designed to open up new revenue avenues for channel owners. Following the announcement, TON’s value nearly doubled. jumping from $2.51 on February 29 to $5.30 by April 1, as per data from TradingView.

Telegram’s decision to share ad revenues in cryptocurrency marks a pivotal moment for the platform, which generates over one trillion channel views monthly. Channel owners can now withdraw their earnings without any fees, further encouraging participation in the Telegram Ad Platform.

As the third most downloaded messaging app, trailing only behind WhatsApp and Snapchat, Telegram has historically allowed channel owners to monetize their audiences through various methods such as paid posts, membership fees for private channels, and merchandise sales.

In addition to the ad revenue sharing scheme, Telegram is also exploring blockchain technology through its mini-decentralized applications (Mini Apps), available on the platform. According to Justin Hyun, the director of investments at Ton Foundation, these Mini Apps could serve as a gateway for mainstream blockchain adoption. By introducing user-friendly decentralized applications without overtly emphasizing the blockchain technology behind them, Telegram aims to onboard 500 million users onto the blockchain by 2028 by leveraging simple use cases that integrate into the users’ experience on the platform.

Earlier in September, the Open Network Foundation (TON Foundation) revealed that Telegram has launched a self-custodial crypto wallet called TON Space.

The novel wallet, developed by The Open Platform (TOP), facilitates decentralized payments and helps developers in crafting cryptocurrency-compatible mini applications that operate within the Telegram ecosystem.

Telegram’s approach to cryptocurrency diverges from traditional centralized solutions, prioritizing user control over their digital assets. This initiative aligns with its overarching objective of evolving into a comprehensive “super app,” akin to WeChat, while expanding its ecosystem by incorporating decentralized functionalities.

While there are other crypto wallets available outside of Telegram, the challenge often lies in user adoption and distribution.

In 2021, Telegram agreed to hand over all bank statements related to its $1.7 billion ICO after it abandoned its TON blockchain project. The decision came after mounting legal ramifications coupled with the more aggressive stance taken by the US regulators, which ultimately made Telegram executives reconsider their crypto ambitions altogether.

At the time, Telegram CEO blasted the court’s ruling that found the resale of Grams into the secondary public market would be an integral part of the scheme that involves US purchasers and thus likely securities laws would apply.