Starbucks mobile payments eclipse 26M within first year

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Almost 12 months after Starbucks launched mobile payment services across its 7,000 company-operated U.S. stores and more than 1,000 Target locations, the coffeehouse giant reports consumers have completed more than 26 million mobile transactions to date.

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Customers loaded $2.4 billion to their Starbucks Card accounts in 2011.

The Starbucks Card Mobile App enables iPhone, Android and BlackBerry users to pay for their order by holding their handset in front of a countertop scanner and processing the app's on-screen barcode. Within the first nine weeks of the mobile payment program, introduced in January 2011, consumers funded 3 million transactions via smartphone--during the nine-week period beginning in October, customers completed 6 million mobile transactions.

Customers loaded $2.4 billion to their Starbucks Card accounts in 2011, with prepaid cards now used to fund one in four Starbucks transactions in the U.S. The company adds that smartphone owners have reloaded $110.5 million onto Starbucks Cards directly through the mobile app.

In addition to mobile payment and card reload capabilities, the Starbucks Card Mobile App enables customers to manage their Starbucks Card account, check their current balance, view their My Starbucks Rewards status and locate nearby Starbucks locations.

This summer, Starbucks extended its Starbucks Card eGift feature to its iPhone and iPod touch app, enabling consumers to treat friends and family to beverages, food or merchandise directly via mobile device. Users may also build drinks and access food and beverage information. Starbucks adds that the mobile payment feature is the most popular component of the app.

Last month, Starbucks debuted its free Cup Magic augmented reality application in conjunction with the return of seasonal favorites like the Gingerbread Latte and Eggnog Latte. Smartphone owners can use the app to bring to life characters and interactions integrated into Starbucks' red holiday cups, coffee bags and signage.

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