New ways to buy coffee – why is it always starbucks ?

Posted on November 9, 2012


  I was at a talk the other day (called “Mobile Money makes the world go round”) where one of the speakers declared that Starbucks has the largest mobile payments platform in the USA.

Anyway a couple of new ways to pay for your coffee without using cash have come to light, so lets have a look.

Square have a new system whereby you can pay in advance, on your device using their app.  then once you’ve made the payment a QR code is created which you can than have scanned at the shop,  thus proving you’ve paid.  Neat, simple.

This is the square wallet, there is more to it than that,  you can search for participating shops nearby, and earn loyalty points/rewards too.

One to watch,  because, inevitably our wallets, cards of all types, licenses, the works will be on our phone/tablet etc.  and these early entrants are interesting to watch.

Another service is the GoPaygo which is a service that lets you shop for goods on your phone,  pay for them on your phone,  and then head out and collect them.  The last bit is because it is designed for local shops around you.  Lets say you want that coffee,  or lunch.  you find it on the app, select what you want,  and pay.

Then when the shop has prepared what you want, they message you.  you leave, pick it up no waiting etc) and then off you go.  Neat.

This is the kind of thing I would expect to see more of,  collect and pay but reversed.

The killer to all of these is that the shops / merchants do need to be signed up and to have their goods available to the app,  this is the bit that worries me.

Mind you,  at the same event as above another chap stated that in 5 years the high street will not have many shops that sell goods left, because of the huge draw of online shopping.  High street shops see a huge amount of their traffic becoming folks just looking, and selecting,  then buying on line. This kind of service could help protect some of those stores from closing, by providing a convenient online store,  and the personal service of a store.