From next month onward, all you will need to buy your favorite coffee at Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) are your Smartphone and the Square Wallet app. The coffee company announced Thursday that from November onward, customers will be able to use Square’s mobile payment system in about 7,000 U.S. stores. Using Square (a hot start-up led by Twitter Inc co-founder Jack Dorsey) and Starbucks’ existing mobile payment app, customers will be able to digitally tip their baristas.
Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) and Square Wallet came together in August, to facilitate the digital payment. As per the deal, Starbucks invested $25 million in the mobile payments company, and Square agreed to process credit and debit card transactions at U.S. Starbucks stores, as well as enable purchases through Pay with Square.
The new payment facility will help the coffee company to develop a stronger relationship with customers, through their smartphones, and will also help in reducing its payment processing costs. The mobile payments services have been a center of attraction for many companies, including tech giants like Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), as well as to credit card providers and wireless carriers.
The new payment facility will be available to iPhone and Android users. To start with the service, consumers will just have to link their credit card to the account once, and open a tab at a store or restaurant. Once registering is done, the store can sense the phone’s location and automatically transfer payment. The ID of the customer can be verified through a picture ID and name that pops up on the cashier’s screen. Initially the Starbucks cashiers will scan a bar code on Square users’ phones, but in the future the process will use Square’s GPS technology to detect a customer’s phone in the store.
Also, Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) has its own in house mobile payment app, which the company claims has processed more than 70 million mobile payment transactions, since launching the app in January 2011.
Mobile based transactions are estimatedto increase nearly fourfold, to more than $1.3 trillion annually by 2017, according to a recent report from Juniper Research. Many well known names have been using the same idea to woo the customers. Dunkin’ Donuts launched its own mobile app, with a payment feature that is similar to Starbucks’, in August this year. McDonald’s Corporation (NYSE:MCD) is also testing its mobile payments, with its provider, PayPal, at 30 of its restaurants in France.