Telegram x TON

Messaging meets the Blockchain

Papa — TON

Telegram is the fouth most popular messaging app in the world with over 900 million monthly active users. The integration of the TON (The Open Network) blockchain is a significant step towards mainstream blockchain adoption that sets TON apart from other blockchains by leveraging Telegram’s vast user base plus offering a seamless onboarding experience through both non-custodial and self-custodial wallets.

Statista May 2024

Ease Of Access

By providing a user-friendly interface that hundreds of millions of people already understand & enjoy, TON eliminates many of the typical barriers to entry, such as private key management & the need for multiple transactions before arriving on-chain. One key aspect of this integration is the availability of both non-custodial and self-custodial wallets. 

Telegram x Ton Defi

Non-custodial wallets, such as the official Telegram wallet, offer users the convenience of managing their funds directly within the Telegram app. However, some users have reported issues with the custodial nature of this wallet, which limits user control over funds. Some complaints suggest a wallet can be entirely disabled by the telegram team if it is custodial (they look after your keys). In this vein a friend had the following experience:

Fortunately after KYC they were able to regain access to their funds but this remains relatively precarious. There is a famous saying that applies: 

“not your keys not your coins” 

They have advised using a different wallet external to the telegram app. Alternatively within the native telegram @wallet there is a self custody option called TON SPACE which one can choose with the possibility of saving your keys via email or via private key (24 words). 

Storied Provenance

In 2018, Telegram, led by the Durov brothers, announced the development of the Telegram Open Network (TON), a blockchain platform designed to scale to the messaging app’s vast user base. To fund the project, they raised $1.7B through an initial coin offering (ICO) for its native token, $Gram.

However, in 2019, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a lawsuit against Telegram, alleging that the ICO constituted an unregistered securities offering. After a lengthy legal battle, Telegram was forced to abandon the project and return funds to investors in 2020.

Seen in Okx article, Source: TON,; Coindesk, May 13, 2023

Despite this setback, the TON community, consisting of developers and enthusiasts, continued to build on the open-source codebase. The project was rebranded as The Open Network, and the Gram token was renamed Toncoin to distance itself from the legal issues surrounding Telegram.

Since then, the TON ecosystem has flourished, with the development of various decentralized applications, wallets, and services. The TON Foundation, a non-profit organization, was established to support the network’s growth and development.

0kx Ton Opportunities — Source: Coin98Analytics

Some interesting Tokenomics

The initial supply of TON tokens is 5 billion, with no upper limit, growing at about 0.6% per year (approx. equals to 30 million tokens).

Team holds 1.45% of the tokens, the other 98.55% was mined through POW. To address dominance concerns, “TON Token Economic Model Optimization Proposal,” was passed in Feb 2023 freezing inactive wallets for 48 months, affecting 171 wallets holding over 1B TON (21% of the total at that time). 

May 2024: 85.53% of users hold TON below $1k, 14.05% hold $1k — $100k, and a mere 0.42% of holders are classified as Richers, with holdings of $10k or more. In terms of holding periods, about 18.08% of holders have kept their TON for over a year, while the monthly holding rate stands at 12.20%.

Dapps and Services 

The TON ecosystem has quickly become a hub for various decentralized applications (dapps) and services, catering to a wide range of user interests and needs. Some notable examples include:

Usernames: Fragment

  • Buy & Sell telegram usernames 

  • Can own 11+ usernames for free, 21+ with Premium 

  • Stored on the blockchain + connect telegram & ton wallet

  • 0.015 TON per year to continue leasing the domain name


Help secure the proof of stake network, earn rewards 


Telegram x Ton Defi (May 2024)



Picked some up, for research sake 👀


  • MyTonWallet (self custodial wallet, only annoyance is when using it cuts off any music or podcast you are listening to when you switch to it) 

  • Apps in Ton: 

  • Launchpad:


One of the most impressive demonstrations of TON’s potential is the success of NOTcoin, a simple click-to-earn game that reached 4.1 million players within a week of its launch, and as of May 2024 reached 40 million activated users. The gaming token quickly rose to the top fifty cryptocurrencies globally rising 300% in its first week of trading. 

“This growth surpassed the entire gaming sector of crypto combined & even outpaced the adoption rate of ChatGPT.” BingX

The ease of access and social interaction features built into NOTcoin exemplify how TON and Telegram can drive viral adoption. Other games establishing themselves with users include:

Hamster Kombat

Nelson earning Coins

Catizen AI 



Other games: Bull Run, DotCOin, PixelTap, TimeTon, (check in every 8 hours for 10 seconds) TapSwap, Tonplanets, Memefi, Pocket Rocket & Wormfare Slap


It remains to be seen how this might interface with nascent web3 social protocols like farcaster, lens & 0xppl vis a vis integrating other blockchains.

We already see elements of this integration across the different bots that leverage blockchain based api’s. A typical one found within community group chats is an automated bot (using Moralis) that listens to blockchain events and sends real-time notifications. Or there are others which, when prompted, furnish additional information (using Python) including changes in price over a 24-hour period, market capitalization, trading volume, historical price data etc. 


Another type of blockchain based bot is the trading bot which makes it easier to interact with chains like Solana, Base, and Ethereum e.g. setting stop losses, take profit levels, tracking portfolios and even copy trading. Bots generate revenue from transaction volumes and associated fees. The typical “picks and shovels” play: robust even in bear markets.

Three bots — Trojan, BONKbot, and Banana Gun — collectively generated over $725,000 in fees in the last 24 hours. The sector as a whole has surged in the last month. It had over $153 million in trading volume in the last 24 hours, and the trading bots generated over $700 million in trading volume and over $5 million in revenue on March 18. DL NEWS

One potential avenue for creative exploration is stickers. There is a project called Sofamon which is innovating on their design, implementation and utility with a view that the affinity we have to our PfP (profile pictures) will prove transferable to this medium. Certainly with the memeability of gifs, the popularity of NFTs, and the composability of stickers/emoji's as a medium its an interesting prospect.

Here is a SOFAMON invite code to get you started: jBaQL

Monetisable stickers is the upcoming meta on telegram it seems, with 730B stickers sent monthly on the platform and a recent announcement indicating artists that create them will get 95% of revenues. One of the TON campaigns rewarding users, creators and developers is called The Open League and is funded to the tune of $115m, having awarded approximately $40m so far since it launched in March 2024. The president of the TON foundation has indicated that there will be a campaign for stickers launched soon specifically.

Ton/Telegram Stickers


TON Speed is mooted as being faster relative to other blockchains. I disagree. Perhaps this is true at layer 1 level compared to ETH and BTC but not at layer 2 level e.g. Base, Optimism, Zksync and Arbitrum. Transactions can be slow in my personal experience, with some taking up to 30 to 40 minutes to occur — specially bridging via dedust for instance. 

Be wary asking questions in any of the telegram channels. Opportunist scammers will get in touch directly and ask you to continue the conversation privately, whilst pretending to offer “support” such that they can try access your funds. All comms should be happening in the main chat transparently for all to see (not in a secret chat). Discord has controls for this to prevent people from a server messaging you privately, telegram doesn’t yet have this functionality. 

The games feel like a bit of a waste of time at the moment, with simple mechanics and annoying noises its hard to turn off. However it certainly feels like 1. they are definitely one or two iterations from being engaging and 2. they have obviously optimised for ease of use, which is working given the scale of figures playing. Early users of NOTcoin made five figures Many have both Russian and English translations, demonstrating how big a market that is in this ecosystem. 

Source: Statista

Telegram enjoys a substantial user base, particularly outside of China and America, with Russia, India, and Brazil being the top 3 countries of the user base. In 2022, Telegram recorded 34.91 million downloads in Russia, surpassing second-place AliExpress (29.29 million downloads). India has the highest number of Telegram users, with 86.6 million registrations, followed by Brazil (15.8 million) and the United States (10.89 million). 0xk Ventures



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