TechnologyCTO Telefonica opens its doors to us on Programmer's...

CTO Telefonica opens its doors to us on Programmer’s Day


Every September 13 – or 12 if it is a leap year – engineers and developers around the world celebrate Programmer’s Day. A date that reminds us of the role that programmers have in society. This role is to give structure to the computer systems that interconnect our world, with the purpose of making our lives a little easier. 

What better day than September 13 to also talk about our work in the CTO-Novum Android Apps team. My name is David Santiago, and I work as an Engineering Manager at Telefonica. Together with the rest of my iOS and Web colleagues we make up the CTO-Novum Apps team.  

Our history goes back to the old Tuenti social network , back in 2009. Since then, we have gone through a few transformations; from being part of Tuenti –already as a mobile operator in 2012–, to the first of several apps launched in Latin America with Mi Movistar Argentina in 2016. Then came the Novum project–emerging from the union with TuGo–, and finally it was included as a area more within CTO of Telefonica. 

Without a doubt, these have been years of technical challenges, where we have adopted and developed technological solutions for an increasingly digitized world. This has also allowed us to adapt internally to the changing needs of the business, offering alternatives such as teleworking, and reorganizing our teams and roles in each project to facilitate the work of our colleagues.  

Creative solutions for all devices. This is the day to day in the CTO-Novum area 

Within our team we take care of facilitating the development and evolution of the Android platform necessary for product teams to create solutions for our customers. This translates into the launch of apps for Google Play such as SmartWiFi, My Movistar, Vivo Brasil, My O2 UK, Solar360 or Latch. In other words, a wide range of differentiated products and services that millions of users use every day. 

Right now we are working on new applications for the German market, and each one is in a different phase of development. They are projects for German operators such as Mein O2, Mein Blau, WhatsAppSim, NettoKOM or Fonic, among others, and we hope they will see the light of day soon. 

We have also internally developed some Open Source projects , such as Tweaks or App Logger, to make them available to our company’s developer community. And that’s not all! We also have a few surprises in the oven, but we hope to share them very soon in a future post.  

On Programmer’s Day we open the doors for you 

If you are a programmer and you like what you are reading, I would like to tell you now how we work in our area. Our work involves giving all kinds of support for the inclusion of new features in apps, always looking for the best solution based on the needs of each project and our clients, always with the highest quality. This also requires a great knowledge of the Android platform and the best engineering practices to solve the challenges that are presented to us on a day-to-day basis. We get involved in all phases: from the moment new needs begin to be identified, to the follow-up of any incident that may arise once the apps are already released to the public. 

The work environment is one of the aspects most valued by team members. The collaboration between all of us is continuous, regardless of the projects we are working on. The most experienced engineers love to share their knowledge with the rest of their peers. This fusion between personal skills –such as humility and empathy– and professional ones –experience and skill– is unique, and is not so easily found in our sector. On the other hand, the new incorporations that join the team always have a senior member who accompanies them in their learning process so that they are as comfortable and safe as possible.  

In the current context in which remote work has become so important, we set aside moments every day to talk about our personal issues in a more relaxed environment. Most of us meet at least once a week in our offices, and every month we get together for a team lunch. Although chats and video calls are essential tools for communication, we don’t want to lose the differential touch that comes from being able to see colleagues from time to time, and while we’re at it, have a laugh with each other. 

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