“Good news, Starbucks fans: The company is expanding a pilot program that lets customers order ahead of time and bypass the checkout line to 21 new states.”
As Time notes, the program is called Mobile Order & Pay. It originally launched last December in Portland and works through the current Starbuck’s iPhone app. This news comes as a a major letdown to Android users, who won’t be able to use the app right now. Time says it will appear on the Android platform later this year, but that can mean as late as December.
Starbucks has been leading the technology revolution in their stores. Besides the advanced iPhone app, Digital Trends describes another advancement the coffee company has made at their stores.
“Circular Powermat charging spots are built into the long bench against the main window, and they are about the size of a CD. The charging mats sit flush with the tabletop, and a casual observer would easily mistake them for placemats. This is where the magic happens. Place your wireless charging compatible device on the spot, and let the power flow.”
Starbucks has rolled out their wireless charging spots to many other locations, including several in Southern California. If you have a Galaxy S6, all you have to do is lay your device on the CD-sized placemat and your phone will start charging. If you have an iPhone, you will need a special wireless charging adapter (which Starbucks provides) in order for this to work.
This past year has also seen Starbucks’ Google high-speed Wi-Fi appear at more than half of their locations. Last year, Yahoo News said that Starbucks now has the fastest Wi-Fi in the United States.
“According to the folks at OpenSignal, which measures WiFi and cellular signal strength across the country, Starbucks offers the fastest free public WiFi among locations tested within the United States.”
Yahoo noted that Starbuck’s Wi-Fi download speeds were as fast as 9.01 Mbps and is faster than America’s average 4G LTE smartphone connection, which tops out at 6.52 Mbps. And it’s only going to get faster.
Starbucks has been a best friend to technology addicts since the late 1990s, when they offered wired LAN connections. In the early 2000’s, Starbucks started offering free Wi-Fi and continues to do so until this day. Even if some consider the drinks at Starbucks to be overpriced, computer and smartphone users definitely get their money’s worth by hanging out there.
[Photo by Stephen Brashear / Getty Images]