Messaging service provider Telegram announced monthly active user numbers hit 400 million worldwide, while unveiling plans to tap into the video communication segment to meet growing demand during the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

In a blog marking the milestone, CEO Pavel Durov said Telegram users increased by 100 million in the past year and the app is attracting at least 1.5 million new registrations per day, making it the most downloaded social media app in more than 20 countries.

Durov explained Telegram was “ideal for remote work and study during the quarantine” as it came with features including cloud storage, folders and desktop support.

He noted current global Covid-19 lockdowns emphasised the need for “a trusted video communication tool”, but argued current services compromised by either offering security or usability.

“We’d like to fix that, and we will focus on bringing you secure group video calls in 2020”, Telegram’s head said.

As part of the announcement, Durov unveiled a range of updates, adding educational features to quizzes and revealing a crowdsourcing initiative in which the company will provide €400,000 to creators of educational tests.