In the past, users could post messages on-chain, but these messages were entirely public and unencrypted. However, as announced by the TON Foundation on July 3, the Open Network (TON) has now introduced an encrypted on-chain messaging feature, enabling TON users to send private messages.
TON is a blockchain network that originated from code developed by the Telegram instant messaging app team. Despite Telegram abandoning the project in July 2020 without launching a mainnet, they open-sourced TON's code, allowing others to continue building on it.
The current network, known as "TON," was constructed by the TON Foundation. The foundation asserts that TON offers greater scalability and transaction throughput compared to other options in the Web3 ecosystem, while still maintaining decentralization.
Previously, TON permitted users to include messages in their transactions, but these messages were entirely public. The new feature enables users to encrypt these messages end-to-end, ensuring that only the intended recipient can read them.
Anatoly Makosov, a core developer of TON, stated that this feature was created to personalize transactions, allowing users to include text for the recipient, such as "for coffee" or "happy birthday." The encrypted messaging feature now allows this popular functionality.
Makosov also highlighted the usefulness of the feature in case of an "apocalypse" scenario where traditional messenger servers fail. TON can serve as a reliable and secure method for private communication in such situations.Currently, encrypted messages are supported by various retail wallet apps such as MyTonWallet, OpenMask, and TON Wallet. The announcement also noted that upcoming updates to the mobile wallet Tonkeeper will incorporate this feature.
Furthermore, the TON Foundation initiated a $25 million accelerator program in May to incentivize app developers to create applications on the network. Additionally, an independent development team developed a Telegram trading bot in November to streamline user onboarding onto TON.