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Starbucks Gets Mobile Payment System

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the keys-and-sugar dept.

Handhelds 149

Ron writes "Starbucks has started accepting mobile payments. Customers can now use the Starbucks Card Mobile app on their iPhone, iPod touch, or BlackBerry at nearly 6,800 company-operated Starbucks stores in the US plus more than 1,000 outlets inside Target stores. To pay with their phone, app users simply select 'touch to pay' and hold up the barcode on the screen to the 2D scanner at the register. The app also lets users manage Starbucks accounts and find nearby stores. To start using your device as tender, you can download the app now for iOS and BlackBerry. An Android application is also said to be in the works, but the company has not yet given a release date, and there's no word yet on plans for a Windows Phone version."

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Achievement unlocked (5, Funny)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938422)

Achievement unlocked: ability to be even more pretentious whilst in line at Starbucks

Re:Achievement unlocked (0)

Magada (741361) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938550)

It would be more along the lines of:
Achievement Unlocked! - 'Pretentiouser and pretentiouser.' (4 of 10)
with a bit of flavor text beneath:
Not only have you publicly paid 7 bucks for an over-sugared cup of burnt coffee, but you managed to do so in a way that let you flaunt your pimped iPhone!

Re:Achievement unlocked (1, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940214)

Not only have you publicly paid 7 bucks for an over-sugared cup of burnt coffee, but you managed to do so in a way that let you flaunt your pimped iPhone!

And, clearly in no way shape or form would someone with a Blackberry ever do this ... after all, it doesn't say right in TFS that this will also work on Blackberry's. And, they'd never be in the process of doing this for an Android phone either, as they would make no sense. What self respecting person with an Android would ever do this, what with all of the web servers they're running and neck-beards they're growing to show how anti-cool (and therefore cooler) they are?

Clearly, the only people ever doing this will be using iPhones and dressed in the requisite black turtle-neck, and the rest of the world will have to stand in line like chumps and pay with old fashioned money.

Oh, wait ... no ... Starbucks wants this available on every major smartphone so they can sell as much coffee as they can.

Regardless of your phone platform of choice ... pretentious wankers of all stripes will soon be paying "7 bucks for an over-sugared cup of burnt coffee" via their phone.

Vent your spleen at Starbucks and its patrons, not the iPhone. I bet as many Blackberry's and Androids go in as iPhones.

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34940846)

Who pissed in your 7 buck over-sugared cup of burnt coffee and iPhone this morning?

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34941156)

Who pissed in your 7 buck over-sugared cup of burnt coffee and iPhone this morning?

Every self-righteous, condescending little prick that walks around saying "zomg, teh Apple is teh suxors and you have no freedom but teh Android is da bomb and I can run puython on it".

The fact that these people actually believe they're better than people with iOS devices gets more than a little irritating -- it's all just fanboi-ism, and it's a phone, get over yourselves and fuck off.

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

Magada (741361) | more than 3 years ago | (#34941236)

The achievement for Blackberry users would be phrased differently, with more of an EVE Online flavor, as opposed to the tongue-in-cheek WoW way of doing it.

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34941304)

The achievement for Blackberry users would be phrased differently, with more of an EVE Online flavor, as opposed to the tongue-in-cheek WoW way of doing it.

Wow, I know what most of those words are, but I have no idea WTF you're talking about.

I think the universal translator must be offline again. ;-)

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

shikaisi (1816846) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940224)

Pretentious? Moi?

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

masterwit (1800118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938564)

You beat me to the joke.

But seriously though, this is "cash money" for the Starbucks market. As for a Windows phone, meh, that is like these people not driving a hybrid...

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

B1ackDragon (543470) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939566)

This'll never work. How are people going to annoyingly talk on their phones while ordering?

Re:Achievement unlocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34939702)

Extra loud, I'd guess.

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940356)

This'll never work. How are people going to annoyingly talk on their phones while ordering?

With a blue tooth earpiece, and multi-tasking on the phone?

Give it time, and they'll just text their order, pay, and collect their beverage all while talking on their phone and checking that important email that just arrived.

Of course, I'm glad to see an increasing number of stores with signs up that say "we will be happy to serve you when you are done your phone conversation" ... there's nothing worse than seeing the guy in front of you standing there on a conversation too busy to actually place his order or interact with the cashier.

Re:Achievement unlocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34940692)

With a blue tooth earpiece, and multi-tasking on the phone?

So, only if they've got a iPhone 3GS or 4 then.

Re:Achievement unlocked (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940808)

So, only if they've got a iPhone 3GS or 4 then.

Well, I don't think anybody who can't afford to upgrade their phone could actually afford to buy a coffee at Starbucks. ;-)

Those people just scavenge empty cups from the garbage and pour the coffee from their thermos into it. You know, like putting rims on your rusted out car.

TFS also mentions Blackberry now and Android coming soon, so fear not!

Re:Achievement unlocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34941168)

This'll never work. How are people going to annoyingly talk on their phones while ordering?

That's why AT&T is claiming simultaneous voice & data as a selling point for AT&T iPhones over Verizon iPhones. Duh.

Use with iPad (1)

QuincyDurant (943157) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940640)

I'm going to pay with my iPad today--and then see if I do anything stupider during the remainder of January than carry a 1.5 pound device through the checkout line instead of a 1/64th ounce Starbucks card.

Is it me (3, Interesting)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938426)

Or is this an incredibly stupid idea? Nothing says "hack/steal my phone" like turning into a cash machine.

Re:Is it me (1)

MikeDirnt69 (1105185) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938458)

Coffee adicted Kleptomaniac: Check!

Re:Is it me (4, Insightful)

jo_ham (604554) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938656)

So, what? The thief buys 200 coffees on your account and sells them for cash to punters outside?

I think it would just be easier to sell the phone itself if you're going to go to the trouble of stealing it.

Re:Is it me (4, Insightful)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938776)

That's not it. Right now it's Starbucks, but soon it will be McDonalds and Wal Mart and the gas station, etc. Watch, you'll see.

Now you could argue that there's no difference between this and a credit/debit card. However there is one huge difference. With a credit card the merchant obtains the equipment from the bank, and you obtain your card from the bank. They work together, the card never leaves your presence, the card reader never leaves the merchant's point of sale, and it's hard (but not impossible) for someone to get in between both of them.

With a cell phone the "equipment" is partly in the hands of the public and relies on software and encryption to prevent hacking and "man in the middle" exploits. Well the first rule of security is never give someone physical access to your system... If the bank is assuming that the cell phone/reader combo is "safe" and does little checking (which is probably the case: banks are masters of "security by obscurity"), soon you'll be able to bill more than a coffee to someone else's account.

      Where's the defectivebydesign tag when I need it?

Re:Is it me (2)

Stooshie (993666) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938874)

How would a "man in the middle" exploit be done with a barcode?

Re:Is it me (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939424)

If it presents the same barcode every time, you just copy the barcode and it's just like a stolen credit card number from there. I hope the people behind this idea aren't so retarded, but based on what I've seen with other banking mechanisms, I wouldn't be surprised if it was that stupid.

Instead it should get a piece of data specific to the transaction from another source (could be from a web server, or a code keyed/scanned into the phone, security isn't that important for this number) which it then hashes with some private string known only to the retailer and the phone (this string is the key to the castle and must be kept secret!), and then the barcode presented by the phone is based on that. That way if anyone "MITMs" you, all they can do, if they're really fast, is pay for your current transaction...that you were in the process of paying for anyway.

I basically just described md5-challenge authentication BTW, but you'd use a better hashing algorithm these days.

Re:Is it me (1)

cgenman (325138) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939458)

The same realistically could be said of credit cards, though. You can clone them pretty easily, and once a swipe has gone through you no longer know what is approved.

For each i-device user, you could generate 100,000 random codes on the server. When validating the transaction, you only validate against the first code on the stack, before popping it off. You could also require part of the transaction to be validated via SMS code to that particular phone, and a short user secret code. Now you know that the user knows the password, has the initial password database you sent out, and has the account's phone. Even successful spoofing would show up to the user as texted attempts to use their phone.

Re:Is it me (1)

WaldorfSalad (670169) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939546)

I don't think you understand how credit card processing works. Honestly, this system is just as open to man-in-the-middle and info hijacking as your credit cards are. Banks don't have a secret vault full of "secure" credit processing systems to give to their customers. Hell, most banks don't want anything to do with it, which is why there are scads of credit card processing companies around.

Re:Is it me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34939594)

That's not it. Right now it's Starbucks, but soon it will be McDonalds and Wal Mart and the gas station, etc. Watch, you'll see.

Now you could argue that there's no difference between this and a credit/debit card. However there is one huge difference. With a credit card the merchant obtains the equipment from the bank, and you obtain your card from the bank. They work together, the card never leaves your presence, the card reader never leaves the merchant's point of sale, and it's hard (but not impossible) for someone to get in between both of them.

With a cell phone the "equipment" is partly in the hands of the public and relies on software and encryption to prevent hacking and "man in the middle" exploits. Well the first rule of security is never give someone physical access to your system... If the bank is assuming that the cell phone/reader combo is "safe" and does little checking (which is probably the case: banks are masters of "security by obscurity"), soon you'll be able to bill more than a coffee to someone else's account.

      Where's the defectivebydesign tag when I need it?

My bank does not issue (smart)phones. They do issue credit cards. They do insure my purchases with said cards. I don't have to scan barcodes at places that don't have barcodes today. 99.999% of the reason I use credit cards is for convenience.

Now, if I can get a burnt $2 coffee for like $.75, I might suffer and look like a dork scanning a 1 or 2d barcode with my phone that is running out of battery life, but I don't see any of these things becoming a reality.

Re:Is it me (1)

AmberBlackCat (829689) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939752)

I've left my debit card places. I've lost it before. Two big reasons to prefer the phone over the debit card are 1. phones can have a passcode while you can just swipe the card. and 2. Phones can often tell you where they are while cards won't.

What they really need is a way for the phone owner to remotely disable the mobile payment apps.

Re:Is it me (1)

kitsunewarlock (971818) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940116)

Or the thief buys tons of starbucks gift cards, claiming they are for an office event or something if the cashier lifts a brow, and sells them back to people outside. Or some of the merch starbucks has--cups, books, board games, CDs. They sell far more than just coffee.

Re:Is it me (1)

Chapter80 (926879) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938734)

Or are credit cards an incredibly stupid idea? Nothing says "hack/steal my wallet" like turning into a cash machine.

There, fixed it for ya.

Re:Is it me (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938824)

See my reply to jo ham.

But also - credit cards DO get forged and stolen, PIN get stolen, or people get a gun to their head and asked to enter the PIN at a cash machine.

So what happens if you devise a means of payment where you don't need to show id and the cashier is just waiting for the machine to go "beep" or the green light to turn on?

Re:Is it me (2)

Americano (920576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939186)

So what happens if you devise a means of payment where you don't need to show id and the cashier is just waiting for the machine to go "beep" or the green light to turn on?

Just a round number guess, but I think what happens is that 95+% of transactions that go through this way are faster, easier, and more convenient for customers.

I'm not sure why you see more risk with this than there is with a credit card. When I go to the store and use a credit card today, the clerk just waits for the machine to go beep and the green light turns on. They rarely-if-ever compare signatures, and it's not like they're trained in handwriting analysis anyway. When's the last time that a cashier compared the signature on the back of the card with the signature you put on the receipt? Or asked for an ID if you didn't have a signature on the back of your card? I can't even remember the last time I was asked for an ID - part of this is apathy on the part of the cashier, and part of this is the fact that we tend to go to the same places repeatedly, and the cashiers get to know their customers by name & by sight.

Re:Is it me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34939508)

Howdy friendly looking stranger: my credit card battery just died, can I make a quick purchase on your credit card...not exactly the same.

Re:Is it me (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940240)

"Or are *debit* cards and *cash* an incredibly stupid idea? Nothing says "hack/steal my wallet" like turning into a cash machine."

There, fixed that for ya.

(Debit card and cash: once the money is gone, it's gone, bank won't care, it wasn't their money. Credit card: it's not your money in the first place and the credit card company will care because it was their money.)

Re:Is it me (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940676)

You're mistaken about debit cards. So long as you report them within two business days after realizing the card is lost, your liability is limited by federal law [ftc.gov] to $50, same as a credit card. And you're not responsible for any unauthorized transfers (not involving the loss of the card) so long as you report them within 60 days.

And that's just what the law requires. In practice, I think every Visa or Mastercard debit or credit card has stronger protections than that - I've had unauthorized charges show up on a few cards, both personal and corporate, and never been held liable for anything beyond a $5 card replacement fee.

Re:Is it me (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940776)

And if your debit card is cloned and not lost? You'd probably never notice those charges in the whole two days you get. Two days is pretty short even for physically losing the card if you don't use it all that often.

Re:Is it me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34939030)

"cash machine" you have to purchase a starbucks gift card and load it onto this system. It is not connected to your bank. Tinfoil hat not needed.

Re:Is it me (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939246)

It's no worse than carrying around a credit card.

Also this should be harder to hack than NFC, and doesn't require any hardware changes. Any old phone could do this.

Similar to the new boarding pass system (3, Insightful)

rhsanborn (773855) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938430)

This sounds very similar to the boarding pass system being used at some airports. They send you a copy of a barcode which acts as your boarding pass. The only trouble I ever had was with a blackberry screen not being big enough for the scanner to pick it up. After I got a Droid, I preferred the digital pass to finding a printer every time I needed a boarding pass.

Likewise, this may be a nice way to manage one's coffee addiction. The only problem is that seeing all your past purchases might not be good for Starbucks. People may finally realize how much money they're spending.

Re:Similar to the new boarding pass system (2)

Thing 1 (178996) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938674)

People may finally realize how much money they're spending.

One could only hope; but, if they treat it anything like their credit card receipts/statements, they won't.

Re:Similar to the new boarding pass system (1)

uncanny (954868) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939054)

I think people who spend $4+ for a cup of coffee know how much money they are wasting anyways.

Re:Similar to the new boarding pass system (1)

Anubis350 (772791) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939278)

The coffee from the crappy stand near the subway stop next to my house, or the bodega down the street: Both $1

The better coffee from the bakery near my house: $1.25 (though they're raising it to $1.50 this week apparently)

Starbucks, somewhere between crappy stand and bakery in quality: $1.70

Point is: It's only slightly more expensive, and perhaps not quite as high quality, but it's not *ludicrous* if all you want is a cup of joe. Now when you start getting into the half-cafe soy latte with the barista's poodle and an elephant on top... then it starts getting pricey.

Re:Similar to the new boarding pass system (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34939436)

Having been to a number of coffee shops in southern Ontario, from the small ones, to the big chains like timmy's and starbucks. I would say that I have a toss up between Starbucks Pike Place, and Coffee Culture's Organic. As for espresso, I find that Starbucks does the best job at this, other than my nice Breville at home with Illy espresso beans, ground in my grinder. They seem to use relatively good quality coffee for their espresso, and their normal roasts are pretty good too. I'm willing to pay a little bit of a premium for something that doesn't taste like shit in a cup (Tim Hortons).

Re:Similar to the new boarding pass system (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34939476)

That extra cost also helps pay for the benefits that Starbucks offers to their employees. I'm glad to see them do that and am willing to pay a little more for that.

Re:Similar to the new boarding pass system (1)

realityimpaired (1668397) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940948)

Not a coffee drinker, but I am a regular at Starbucks... I go there for other drinks that you don't usually find anywhere other than specialty coffee shops. I would be amused to see the expression on the face of the person at the bakery if you asked them to make you a London Fog, for example.... (since Wikipedia is somewhat lacking, it's basically a cappuccino made with Earl Grey tea, instead of coffee). Even something a little more common than that like a

The thing is, for the kinds of drinks that you only find at specialty coffee shops (and not your basic cup of joe), Starbucks' pricing is right in line with the rest of the market. When you compare their prices for specialty drinks against shops like the Second Cup or Bridghead, they're just about par. More expensive for some drinks, less expensive for others. The reason I go to Starbucks is because it's my guilty pleasure of the day... that little bit of fat and sugar that I don't count against my diet. :) There happens to be a Starbucks about a block away from where I work, and that's the main reason I go there and not the Second Cup that's 2 blocks away. (makes a difference when trudging through the snow in -40' wind chill)

Good for them (2)

MrDoh! (71235) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938440)

The stakes to get phone payments working everywhere are so incredibly high. Can see why they'd want to get this in quickly.

Though... I actually like the idea of a barcode, something I have to select on the phone and hit 'display' (after entering my pin or something first to display it so that if it's stolen, just having the phone to tap against nfc contacts isn't enough to clear my account out). Then swipe/display the barcode as normal. Seems a more flexible way to handle it than embedding NFC stuff in hardware.

Re:Good for them (1)

cbope (130292) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938752)

Yeah, like we really need another thing that can be used to pay for overpriced Starbucks coffee... like cash, credit cards, debit cards and the like are completely useless.

I'd also like to state that "cash" means paper money, mainly large denomination bills of course, not coins. You'd need a pack donkey to carry enough coins around to pay for Starbucks coffee.

Re:Good for them (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939000)

That sounds great for fraud prevention, but a lot more effort than just shoving my card in the reader and tapping in my PIN.

(YMMV according to availability of "chip and PIN" payment systems in your country, of course, but that's how it works here in the UK and much of the rest of Europe)

Why? (1)

thethibs (882667) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938476)

All that trouble to get overpriced weak coffee.

A toony at Timmy's gets you good strong coffee and change, without interrupting your call.

Can you tell I'm Canadian?

Re:Why? (1)

jspayne (98716) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938538)

Sorry friend, I can and do say a lot of good things about Timmy's, but it is definitely not stronger than Starbucks.

Re:Why? (1)

bastion_xx (233612) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938908)

My Canadian fiends rave at the quality of Tim Horton's coffee, but I don't get it. To me it tastes pretty much like the *old* McDonalds or QuikTrip coffee did. Now the doughnuts I did like.

Re:Why? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940516)

My Canadian fiends rave at the quality of Tim Horton's coffee, but I don't get it.

And a lot of Canadians don't get Starbucks, though it's definitely increasing in popularity. To me, they burned it when they roasted it, and then brewed it at too high of a temperature to finish ruining it. It tastes like bad diner coffee that has been sitting on the warmer for 3 hours.

Tim's tastes more like what the coffee that comes out of my coffee maker tastes like, which is what I want, not some designer beverage.

And, the few times I have no option but Starbucks ... I find myself in line trying to figure out how the fsck to order a coffee ... just WTF is a tall venti grande skinny double half-caf machiatto with sea foam and acai berries and cinamon??

I want a coffee with cream and sugar, why can't I find that? WTF is wrong with "small, medium, and large?" And why is this coffee five bucks?

Re:Why? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34940952)

In addition to starbucks-speak, they speak english at starbucks too, so just order a small coffee, and you will get exactly what you mean. i think you have to add cream and sugar yourself, though. it probably won't cost 5 bucks either - i think that is for the fancy drinks. plain coffee is less.

Re:Why? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34941276)

In addition to starbucks-speak, they speak english at starbucks too, so just order a small coffee, and you will get exactly what you mean

I actually tried that once, and I got back a stream of adjectives which may have been a question, so I just nodded and said yes. :-P

The problem, is even if the servers can serve you coffee in English (which I'm sure they can) you still have to try to decipher the menu -- I can never find anything that says "small coffee", so I'm staring in bewilderment at this thing trying to see WTF I need to be ordering.

Generally, I just save myself the embarrassment (and the cost) and drink the free coffee in the office. I actually find it tastes better than Starbucks anyway. :-P

Re:Why? (1)

RicktheBrick (588466) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940566)

I live in a small town where someone built a building for Starbucks and two other businesses. Well Starbucks did not last even one year so now the building is empty so I have very little faith in anything Starbucks does.

Re:Why? (1)

realityimpaired (1668397) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940994)

Tim's coffee is pretty revolting, actually. They're probably the worst coffee I've ever tasted. Even McD's coffee is better, and it's cheaper.

But you don't go to Starbucks for an XL double-double. You go to Starbucks for a whole milk chai latte with a vanilla shot. Ever tried ordering something other than a plain cup of joe at Timmy's? If it isn't coffee, hot chocolate, or orange pekoe tea, then don't bother. And if it *is* one of the above, go to McDonald's... they're better on every front, and they have a wider selection of teas. The only reason I ever set foot in Tim's is if I want donuts or timbits.

How does this compare to contactless bank cards? (2)

jemnery (562697) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938494)

Just curious - I'm in the UK and have a bank card that I can just sort of wave at a payment terminal for transactions = £15 - handy when buying lunch. This seems a more elegant solution - do you have these in the US?

Re:How does this compare to contactless bank cards (2)

confused one (671304) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938542)

Yes, but not all the bank cards and card readers / sales terminals have that feature.

Re:How does this compare to contactless bank cards (1)

chemicaldave (1776600) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938884)

We have those in limited numbers. However this payment system is IMO a pain the ass. I have to unlock my phone and start the app, as opposed to just getting a card out of my wallet. It's not elegant at all, and I'm sick of hearing the media have a wet dream thinking this is revolutionary. It's just a reduced version of those apps that combine your discount card barcodes into one program.

Re:How does this compare to contactless bank cards (1)

Ruprecht the Monkeyb (680597) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939058)

Actually, this is probably an improvement. Half the people in line already have their damn iPhones out anyway, paying more attention to someone's inane tweet than to actually ordering or paying for their coffee.

Re:How does this compare to contactless bank cards (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939018)

I assume by "=" you actually mean "<=", right?

Re:How does this compare to contactless bank cards (1)

Whalou (721698) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939308)

I'd say "==".
It would be awesome if it were really an "=". Buy a car, wave the card and get a huge discount. Kind of a card version of a Jedi mind trick.

Re:How does this compare to contactless bank cards (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940766)

How does this compare to contactless bank cards?

This has bar codes ... and smart phones.

A bank card is just passee -- the chav's and WAGs will never go for it. ;-)

The Windows Phone 7 user can't afford Starbucks (1)

phonewebcam (446772) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938526)

He says he has to save all his money to pay his phone bill [tomsguide.com]

Security Issues (1)

snookiex (1814614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938544)

I always have found exotic to pay anything from my [high-end] mobile device. Call me oldschooler, but I still think they're too insecure, and they're not as insecure as they could be. That's really scary.

Is finding a Starbucks a problem? (0)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938586)

The app also lets users manage Starbucks accounts and find nearby stores.

The last time I visited the US, I had the feeling that I couldn't swing a dead cat around my head without hitting a Starbucks. They seemed to be everywhere. (Starbucks that is, not dead cats)

"In Soviet Russia, Starbucks finds you!"

Maybe the app will give you a beep and a pop-up when you are near a Starbucks?

Re:Is finding a Starbucks a problem? (1)

lee1 (219161) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939304)

Re:Is finding a Starbucks a problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34940128)

Maybe the app will give you a beep and a pop-up when you are near a Starbucks?

I feel like my phone would be doing nothing but beeping and chewing through its battery. Six blocks from my house there is a Starbucks across from a Starbucks.

Wow Dumb... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938676)

So I get to waste time putting money on that special card so that the app can act as the card at the register.

Anyone else think this is incredibly dumb? I can whip out my debit/credit card faster than you can load your starbucks app.

Re:Wow Dumb... (1)

theVarangian (1948970) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939268)

So I get to waste time putting money on that special card so that the app can act as the card at the register. Anyone else think this is incredibly dumb? I can whip out my debit/credit card faster than you can load your starbucks app.

The professor teaching me reactive systems theory insists that a computer scientist is a reactive system that outputs coins to obtain coffee so that he/she can output/publish papers. Given that analysis I'd say that any alternative ways of obtaining coffee other than just using coins, bills or credit cards, will make computer scientists (and most other professionals for that matter) more productive. Imagine if you forgot your wallet at home, no cofee..... productivity..... grinding.... to.... a.... halt........ With this app you'd still be able to get your fix and earn your paycheck. This app contributes to the economic growth that is essential to pull us out of this recession and propel us into the next bubble. So no, this is not such a dumb idea after all.

Re:Wow Dumb... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939714)

See you need a processor upgrade. if I leave my wallet at home, I run a subroutine called. Go home to get wallet. Because I will need that wallet for more than coffee.

Also typically if I forgot my wallet, then I forgot my phone because I don't have my phone surgically implanted to my arm. So I can not say that I will have my phone 100% of the time...

By your logic, you need to get your Starbucks prepaid card bar-code tattooed to your wrist.

That would be a seg-fault to me.

Re:Wow Dumb... (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 3 years ago | (#34941254)

not that i'm advocating anything.

but i have my phone with me all the time - i have a spot right on my belt with aholder for it that i put it and it keeps me from forgetting it.

for some reason corp jobs frown on chains on a wallet.

so there have been many days where i have forgotten my wallet, and only once in the last 10 years have i forgotten my laptop, but I've never forgotten my phone.

and no i'm not one of the text/constant talk/crack addicts.

Re:Wow Dumb... (1)

hAckz0r (989977) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940100)

A slight modification to your professors theory here. Computer scientists don't write phone apps, programmers do. Programmers are an interrupt driven technology where management and marketing are the interrupt prioritization arbitrator, which is synthetically sensitive to the smell of money. Unfortunately the smell of money is also more addictive than coffee, so much so, that your brains soon melt and you soon have no common sense when it comes to proper Information Security practices. The usefulness of using an app to display a barcode is marginal at best considering the setup, configuration, separate billing cycle, and the time required to thumb-up your app to display it. Wouldn't a barcode glued to your wallet do just as well?

Besides that, it takes only 15 seconds (i've seen it done) for a professional to breach your phone once they have the right information, with not physical contact, and all your accounts would be on it to be exfiltrated in seconds after that. Maybe you might not be too afraid of someone getting a free cup of coffee by presenting your barcode instead of your own, but there will likely be other information stored on that phone which puts that 'professional' one step closer to owning all your bank accounts. My advise, Don't put any banking information on your phone unless you want to live in the poor house. Trust me, your going to see a lot of angry people being swindled based on what they thought was safely stored on their phone. Its going to be the next crime wave. Just watch.

um... (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938690)

"To pay with their phone, app users simply select 'touch to pay' and hold up the barcode on the screen to the 2D scanner at the register"

and hope no one has a camera phone pointed in your direction at the time?

Re:um... (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938798)

Thank FSM no one can take a picture of my credit card when I'm using it. Or take a video of me inputting my PIN at the ATM. Or just take my wallet. How does this raise any more security concerns than what you're currently using?

Re:um... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940572)

and hope no one has a camera phone pointed in your direction at the time?

What the hell would that have to do with anything?

You phone scans the barcode, and then presumably does some form of exchange with the server, which then causes the register to beep and indicate you've paid. If I take a picture while it's decrypting something, it's not like I can get the cipher key from that.

I'm betting the bar code for the same beverage looks the same over and over.

Makes customers sponsor VISA svc (1)

wrencherd (865833) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938704)

Doesn't this just "off-load" the cost (usually paid by vendors) to use the credit card payment services?

That would mean we're paying twice, since we already pay for the system in the menu prices, no?

Boycott Scarbucks (-1, Offtopic)

fredrated (639554) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938828)

I quit buying their coffee when they decided that people wearing guns could come into their stores and gave a b.s. answer when asked why.

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

lwsimon (724555) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939094)

Meh - you don't shop at Wal-Mart, BestBuy, or a dozen other national chains either, do you? I've never had trouble carrying into any of their stores, openly or concealed.

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

fredrated (639554) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939394)

And I have never had a problem buying the things I need from other sources if one source makes it a stated policy to allow carrying guns into the store by the public.

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

uncanny (954868) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939104)

Yeah, boycott them for siding with that stupid ol' constitution! Next thing you know they'll start letting muslims in?

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

fredrated (639554) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939358)

Siding with the constitution? This is open to interpretation. For example, the 2nd amendment starts “A well-regulated militia being necessary to the defense of the country” which in fact is no longer true since we have a standing army. Since the premise is no longer true it is arguable that the conclusion derived from the premise is thus no longer valid.

In addition to this, since stores are allowed to refuse entry to people carring guns, it would appear that this is also constitutional, i.e., 'siding with the constitution'.

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

uncanny (954868) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939844)

Its their right to say you can't bring a gun onto private property, but its my right to carry one (I CHOOSE) not to, but as much as I dislike Starbucks, I commend them on agreeing with our constitutional right.

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

imamac (1083405) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940364)

A well regulated militia (in our current case, the army) is necessary for defense of the country. The right to bear arms is necessary to ensure the freedom of individuals against that standing army if it becomes corrupted.

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

realityimpaired (1668397) | more than 3 years ago | (#34941110)

"well-regulated", I think, are the words that get ignored the most in that phrase. That phrase makes it pretty clear, to me, that they were actually in favour of *controlling* the types and quantity of weapons that people were allowed to have. Just because you can have a rifle to defend your land does not mean you can have a P90 or MP5 for hunting squirrels.

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940296)

Do you also avoid places with multi-ton murder machines (A.K.A. automobiles)?

Re:Boycott Scarbucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34940724)

I quit buying their coffee when they decided that people wearing guns could come into their stores and gave a b.s. answer when asked why.

See, the rest of the world is reading this going WTF???

Why the hell do you need to be wearing a gun to buy a coffee? This whole "open carry" system for firearms is the most baffling thing I've ever heard of. Who the hell needs to be walking around with a gun for day to day activities unless they're police or something like that?

Is this common? People just walking around with a big old hand-gun strapped to themselves? Why? Just because? Or are you expecting to have to round up a posse or something?

I don't think I'd want to spend too much time in a place where everyone is walking around strapped and ready to throw down. That would make me far too nervous.

Uhh, old news? (3, Informative)

Striikerr (798526) | more than 3 years ago | (#34938914)

I've been using my iPhone app to pay for my Starbucks purchases for a few months now in Florida (so this is hardly new). It has been in the Target stores for a while and in many (but not all) standalone Starbucks stores. It works quite well and I prefer it to using my Starbucks card. I always have my iPhone with me and it's more convenient to use it. Also, it's great because I can reload my card from the same app (which I have done while waiting in line). I'm not concerned about someone stealing my phone and retrieving anything. My phoen is password protected, I can easily wipe the phone if it is stolen and can contact Starbucks to report the lost / stolen cards so that transactions are blocked.
I had originally thought it to be a waste of time and pointless until I decided to try it out. It's actually quite nice.

Story Redundant (1)

ufpdom (556704) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939100)

Why is this even a story.. This mobile payment system has been around for quite awhile. Its not something new that launched last week. Locally to me the only known Starbucks that has this technology is in Target which I rarely go to but never get anything from that location. Even my most visited Starbucks doesnt have this and its in a very busy city location. And yes, still waiting on a android version of this software.

It's not bad. I did it this morning. (1)

gte275e (91656) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939114)

I bought my coffee this morning using this method. I actually like stuff like this so I don't have to carry a card around all the time and don't have to pull out my wallet. There will be training issues the first few times each employee uses it. What mine had to do is put their register on the Tender screen and then select Starbucks card before it would work.

So where is the APP for the tip box? (2)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939158)

Seems they are as common as coffee at Starbucks. I can't imagine that the workers will be pleased if this catches on as their chance of tips will decrease. In some stores it is almost a given if you don't dump the change you get back (at least the coins) you coffee cup won't be as full, let alone having a special drink

Re:So where is the APP for the tip box? (1)

Dakman (824764) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939608)

If they're expecting tips, then maybe they should be paid the $2.33 an hour (in Wisconsin) a tipped employee makes.

Re:So where is the APP for the tip box? (1)

QwkHyenA (207573) | more than 3 years ago | (#34941170)

I couldn't agree more. I haven't tried the app yet but as a regular bux customer I only use cash so I can give them a tip. I always feel bad using a CC because there isn't any way to tip them when using plastic.

It sure would be nice if they had some cool tipping options on the app. (Such as, "Round up to the nearest dollar", "25 cents", "50 cents", "75 cents" and a dollar.)

Security of iPhone and Android app (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34939412)

A mobile security firm performed a security review of the Starbuck's iPhone app [viaforensics.com] and they also reviewed the look-alike-but-not-official Android Starbuck's app [viaforensics.com] and found it stored nearly everything (including full credit card information) insecurely. DOH! It's great to see the new functionality, just wish more attention was paid to security of customer data.

I love the convenience of this (1)

scourfish (573542) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939562)

I mean, all you have to do is start up a $500 electronic device, log into a web service, and generate a bar code that has to be scanned at the register. In the past, i had to go through the painstaking hassle of quickly sliding a small piece of plastic across a device after audibly saying "I would like a coffee."

Re:I love the convenience of this (1)

hawguy (1600213) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939866)

you've obviously never been to Starbucks, if you order a 'coffee' there they'll say "huh? what kind of coffee".

It's not about making it easier for you to buy a coffee, it's about reducing their CC transaction fees. If they can drop the fees a fraction of a percent, that's a huge win for them.

I don't own any of the devices that they have the app for (iPhone, iPod, or Blackberry), but I don't have to *start up" my $500 Android device, at Starbucks I probably have it in my hand already after checking email, so I just enter my passcode (takes about a second for my 5 digit code), and then could start up the app from my home screen. Faster than I could fish out my wallet and extract the credit card.

Re:I love the convenience of this (1)

vondo (303621) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940102)

Try it before you knock it. You don't have to log in to anything. You turn on your phone (which was probably on already), click once to start the app, click again to pay now. Scan it. The alternative is to pull your wallet out of your pocket, open it, pull out the card, swipe it, put it back. It's basically the same AND I get to have one less card in my wallet. (I have a Starbucks card for the 15 times a year I go there). The one less card is really the nice thing for me.

Automatic ordering? (3, Interesting)

hawguy (1600213) | more than 3 years ago | (#34939816)

This would be more interesting if it let you pre-enter your drink order in the app then when they scan it, it automatically prints out the drink label.

That way, those people that order incredibly complicated drinks don't need to yell over the sound of the barista frothing milk 2 feet from the register.

I even have a hard enough time getting them to hear my simple drink order "Tall coffee with room for cream. Ok Grande coffee, do you want room? No, I asked for a 'tall'! Sorry it's loud here, ok tall latte"

I order the same thing every time I go in, there could be a single button click on the app that says "repeat last order".

Re:Automatic ordering? (1)

koreaman (835838) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940220)

If you're ordering plain coffee at Starbucks, you're doing it wrong. Their coffee is of lower quality and higher price than McDonald's, Dunkin Donuts, and a myriad of other major chains that almost certainly exist near you if you are American.

Re:Automatic ordering? (1)

hawguy (1600213) | more than 3 years ago | (#34941100)

Wow, you must have a vast knowledge of the entire united states to know what coffee is cheapest and closest to me. My nearest McDonalds is over a mile from me (which is a long way if you're not in a car), I don't know of a single Dunkin Donuts in this city. Are you available to tell me what else I'm doing wrong in my life?

My train drops me off 10 feet from a Starbucks and I pass no other coffee shops on my way to work. I could walk an extra block out of the way to an independent shop, but they actually charge *more* than Starbucks.

I'm no coffee connoisseur, so Starbucks coffee is everything I need -- it's black (which I cover up with cream and sugar anyway) and has caffeine, and is very consistent in flavor, I know it will taste the same tomorrow as it did yesterday.

The other alternative is the coffee of inconsistent strength from the work machine (too weak, too strong) and powdered "non dairy" creamer.

Wish they'd do this for supermarket club cards (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34940386)

Then maybe I could squeeze my wallet into the pocket of my disco slacks ;)

Re:Wish they'd do this for supermarket club cards (1)

koreaman (835838) | more than 3 years ago | (#34940404)

At every supermarket I know of, you may enter your phone number on the card reader instead of swiping an actual card.

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