Coffee behemoth Starbucks has revealed plans to develop new features for its wildly successful mobile app, which has 12 million active users, processes 6 million transactions a week and makes up 15% of payments in the chain’s US stores.
“Customers continue to embrace our industry leading mobile app in increasing numbers,” said CEO Howard Schultz. “By integrating mobile, loyalty, payment and in-store digital experiences, we are creating the game-changing technologies and experiences for our customers and the opportunity to introduce new lines of business for our company.”
One example of this innovation, says Schultz, is the company’s new mobile order and pay initiative, which allows customers to place and pay for their order before even arriving in the store. The venture was rolled out in Korea last month, but is now set to be introduced in the US, as well as other parts of the world. “Mobile order and pay will be the fastest and easiest way for customers to order, pay for and pick up their purchases, once again demonstrating the leading position Starbucks has in all things mobile,” said Schultz.
But, as Schultz has made clear, mobile ordering is just one of many projects in the pipeline when it comes to the mobile payments space. “We are just beginning to appreciate the full magnitude and possibility of the Starbucks mobile payment platform opportunity,” he said in Feburary. “The mobile transaction platform is still in its nascent stage; there is an opportunity to extend that value to our customers in ways we have not yet shared.”
These initiatives are now underway, but so far the company is keeping their cards close to their chest. “We can tell you right now that we are in a series of very active conversations on this with both technology and financial services companies that would be potential partners here,” said Matt Ryan, Starbucks’ Global Chief Strategy Officer. “While those conversations are going on, I can’t tell you specifics. What I can tell you is that we [have] absolute confidence in the nature of the opportunity here.”
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